Fair Access to Professional Careers

A progress report by the Independent Reviewer on Social Mobility and Child Poverty

May 2012

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Contents

Foreword and summary Chapter 1 Chapter 2 Chapter 3 Chapter 4 Chapter 5 Chapter 6 Chapter 7 Annex A References Introduction Progress in the professions –
what has changed since 2009 Progress in the legal profession Progress in the medical profession Progress in journalism and the
media professions Progress in Westminster and Whitehall Progress made by government on
access to the professions Contributors to the progress report
on Fair Access to Professional Careers

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43
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1

Foreword and summary

Rt. Hon Alan Milburn,
Independent Reviewer on Social Mobility and Child Poverty

Three years ago I reported on what the UK’s professions were doing to aid and abet social mobility in our country. Unleashing Aspiration, the report of the Panel on Fair Access which I chaired, made 88 recommendations to professions, employers, universities, schools and government. This report documents what has changed since 2009. In the intervening three years there has, of course, been a change of government. But the commitment to social mobility has remained constant. The Coalition Government has published a new strategy on the issue and asked me, as Independent Reviewer, to report on its progress. This is my first report. Shortly I will publish two others: one on higher education and the contribution universities are making to social mobility; and the other an assessment of what government is doing to tackle child poverty and enhance social mobility. This report focuses on the role of the professions. They make an enormous contribution to both the British economy and our society. Professions like medicine and law are characterised by high levels of integrity and excellence. They are world leaders in their fields and a source of pride for our country. Today there are almost 13 million professionals in our country. In total 42% of all employment in

the UK is in the professions. That is set to rise to 46% by 2020. Data quoted in this report suggests that the professions have withstood the economic downturn more robustly than other forms of employment. If anything, a professional career is a surer guarantor of economic security and social progress than it was even three years ago. And that will continue into the future. The professions will account for approximately 83% of all new jobs in Britain in the next decade. They hold the key to improving social mobility. The question posed by this report is whether the growth in professional employment is producing a social mobility dividend for our country. The short answer is not yet. The report examines what the professions and government are doing. It looks at specific professions and makes recommendations for further action to build on those made in Unleashing Aspiration to improve social mobility. This report concludes that without further and faster action on the part of the professions, government and others, Britain risks squandering the social mobility dividend that the growth in professional employment offers our country. Social mobility is about breaking the transmission of disadvantage from one generation to the next. When a society is mobile it gives each individual, regardless of background, an equal chance of progressing in terms of income or occupation. The upsurge in professional employment in the middle of the last century created an unparalleled wave of social mobility in Britain. It created unprecedented opportunities for millions of women and men. In the decades since then social mobility has largely stagnated.

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Fair access to professional careers: A progress report

Over recent years there has been a growing recognition that a society in which birth not worth dictates people’s outcomes is not only unfair: it is also unviable. The global financial crisis and the subsequent economic turmoil that has affected countries like the UK have brought these matters to a head. A broad swathe of public and political opinion has coalesced around a deep social concern about rising inequality. A new consensus has begun to emerge that unearned wealth for a few at the top, stagnating incomes for those in the middle and deepening disadvantage for many at the bottom is not a sustainable social proposition. Changing that is a long-term endeavour and it will require a genuine national effort. It is not merely a job for government. Of course, government needs to provide a lead, set an example and create the framework for change. But social change is primarily driven from below, not above. Families and communities are the foundation stone. It is there that aspiration is incubated. Schools and career services have a key role in nurturing potential and developing talent. Universities, colleges and employers – if they open their doors fairly – can then harness and grow it. The professions sit at the heart of this agenda for change. Three years ago I found that for all the efforts that the professions had made to expand the pool of talent from which they recruited, they had actually become more – not less – socially exclusive over time. Unleashing Aspiration found that tomorrow’s professional is growing up in a family richer than seven in ten of all families in the UK. The consequence was that too many able children from average income and middle class families – let alone low-income families – were losing out in the race for professional jobs. At the top of the professional tree especially, the default setting was to recruit from far too narrow a part of the social spectrum. That closed-shop mentality was bad for the professions and bad for any prospect of improved social mobility in our country. Unleashing Aspiration argued that much more had to be done to ensure that all those with the necessary ability and aptitude got a fairer crack of the whip when it came to realising their aspirations for a professional career. The report uncovered a series of practical barriers that prevented fair access to a professional career –

unfocused aspiration-raising programmes, poor careers advice, lack of school choices, artificial barriers between vocational and academic education, unfair university admissions, limited work experience opportunities, non-transparent internships, antiquated recruitment processes, inflexible entry routes. It recommended action across the waterfront to break down those barriers in order to make a professional career more genuinely meritocratic. Unleashing Aspiration led to the promise of a new drive to open up professional careers to a broader social mix. Three years on, this report asks what progress has been made. The answer is not yet enough. On the positive side of the equation, there is evidence of a galvanised effort on the part of many organisations and individuals to engage with the fair access agenda. In particular, many young people working in the professions seem to be highly motivated to encourage successor generations to aspire to a professional career. The range and depth of this activity are to be commended. Overall the Government has shown good intentionality when it comes to trying to improve fair access to a professional career, even though it is making more progress in some areas than in others. It needs to be more holistic in its approach and ensure that its efforts are better co-ordinated. The Social Mobility Business Compact, however, is to be commended. We would now like to see the Government encouraging a broader range of employers, including smaller firms, to commit to the criteria of the Compact. It should establish clear goals and objectives for the programme as a whole. It should publish an annual update on the progress of the Compact, and the Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission should periodically review it. Certain professions have already made progress. The civil service is a case in point. In 2009 Unleashing Aspiration found that 45% of Senior Civil Servants had been privately educated. More up-to-date research has shown a progressive change in this pattern. Of today’s top 200 civil servants (Directors General and Permanent Secretaries), 27% were educated at an independent school. Over one-third (37%) had attended a

Foreword and summary

3

grammar school and 18% had been to a state comprehensive school. There is a long way to go, but this is a start. The civil service is one of several individual professions that this report looks at specifically. It finds that the legal sector is starting to make real efforts in addressing fair access and social mobility. In some cases the legal sector is at the forefront of driving activity aimed at changing access to professional jobs, whether this is through co-ordinated outreach programmes or by introducing socio-economic data collection. We commend these efforts and would like to see other professions following suit. There is, however, a lot more that needs to be done. The further up the profession you go, the more socially exclusive it becomes. Even more worryingly, entry to the law – and therefore the lawyers of the future – is still too socially exclusive. Overall, law is on the right track. But its progress is too slow. It needs to significantly accelerate. Conversely, medicine lags behind other professions both in the focus and in the priority it accords to these issues. It has a long way to go when it comes to making access fairer, diversifying its workforce and raising social mobility. There is no sense of the sort of galvanised effort that the Neuberger Report induced in law. That is regrettable, not least because when it comes to both gender and race, medicine has made impressive progress over recent years. Its success in recruiting more female doctors and doctors from black and minority ethnic backgrounds indicates that with the right level of intentionality the medical profession can also throw open its doors to a far broader social intake than it does at present. The profession itself recognises that the skills which modern doctors require include far greater understanding of the social and economic backgrounds of the people they serve. That is a welcome recognition. It now needs to be matched by action. Overall, medicine has made far too little progress and shown far too little interest in the issue of fair access. It needs a step change in approach. This report finds that journalism has shifted to a greater degree of social exclusivity than any other profession. Without a single representative or

regulatory body, responsibility for bringing about change to the media sector sits with organisations’ boards, senior staff, editors, and human resources teams. Our sense is that current efforts are fragmented and lacking in any real vigour. Journalism, with some honourable exceptions, does not seem to take the issue of fair access seriously. Where it has focused on the issue, it has prioritised race and gender but not socio­ economic diversity. That needs to change. Finally, in politics this report argues that we should want the brightest and the best to be leading our country, regardless of their background. But when the major political parties continue to select Parliamentary candidates who are disproportionately drawn from better-off backgrounds, to the exclusion of those from less well-off ones, they are limiting that pool of talent rather than widening it. Of the Coalition Cabinet in May 2010, 59% were educated privately. Some 32% of the final Cabinet under the previous Labour Government were also educated privately. Over recent years, the political parties have made some progress on selecting women and candidates from minority ethnic backgrounds. A similar effort is now needed on their part when it comes to diversifying the socio-economic backgrounds of those they select to be their candidates for MPs. The Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission should look for evidence of that in the lead-up to the next general election. Across the professions as a whole, the glass ceiling has been scratched but not broken. The professions still lag way behind the social curve. If anything, the evidence suggests that since 2009, taken as a whole, the professions – despite some pockets of considerable progress – have done too little to catch up. The general picture seems to be of mainly minor changes in the social composition of the professions. At the top especially, the professions remain dominated by a social elite. For example, this report finds that:

• the judiciary remains solidly socially elitist, with

15 of the 17 Supreme Court judges and heads of division all educated at private schools before going on to study at Oxford or Cambridge

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Fair access to professional careers: A progress report

• of 38 justices of appeal, 26 attended private

schools, eight attended grammar schools, just two attended state comprehensive schools and two were schooled overseas secondary school, with almost a third going on to study at Oxbridge privately educated, with a third graduating from Oxbridge total in 1997 but after the 2010 election now comprise 35%, with just 13 private schools providing 10% of all MPs

• 43% of barristers attended a fee-paying

• of the country’s top journalists, 54% were

• privately educated MPs comprised 30% of the

their children. The problem is that despite the progress of the last decade there are still too few good schools, and the gap between private and state schools often remains frustratingly wide. But it is not just in schools that the sources of Britain’s low levels of social mobility can be found. There are many contributory factors. It is as much about family networks as it is careers advice, individual aspirations as it is early years education, career development opportunities as it is university admissions processes. It is also about the fact that too often the professions close their doors to a wider social spectrum of talent instead of opening them. This report finds that by and large the barriers that were identified in 2009 as posing the biggest obstacles to more meritocracy in the professions have remained intact. When it comes to raising aspirations among young people for a professional career there is evidence of a lot more activity than in 2009. Many employers are now reaching out to schools and organising taster sessions for pupils. But co-ordination and evaluation are lacking. Government has taken action to help here through a number of policy initiatives which are welcome steps in the right direction, but as yet they do not have national scale or punch. The Government should grow existing initiatives to match the ambitions set out in Unleashing Aspiration for a major national drive to raise young people’s awareness of professional career opportunities. A national mentoring scheme is a particular priority for action. There has been some progress on reforming careers services, particularly by devolving responsibility to schools, as recommended in Unleashing Aspiration. These are welcome developments but there are more steps which the Government now needs to take. First, although schools will have a statutory duty to provide independent, impartial careers guidance for pupils aged 14–16, there is still a question about whether schools will be able to do this effectively given that they have no additional funding. The Government must take all necessary steps to ensure that careers advice in schools does not miss the most disadvantaged pupils. Second, it is critical that access to independent careers guidance is

• 62% of all members of the House of Lords

were privately educated, with 43% of the total having attended just 12 private schools.

This is social engineering on a grand scale. The senior ranks of the professions are a closed shop. If social mobility is to become anything other than a pipedream they will have to open up. Unfortunately, the evidence collected for this report suggests that there is only, at best, limited progress being made in prising open the professions. That is not about to change any time soon. Data collected for this report indicates that the next generation of our country’s lawyers, doctors and journalists are likely to be a mirror image of previous generations. Data from 2010/11 on those who succeeded in getting a university place shows that:

• 41% of law undergraduates were from the three
highest socio-economic groups and only 21% came from the five lowest groups

• 49% of journalism students came from the

highest groups and 14% from the three lowest groups and only 7% from the bottom, with 22% of all medical and dental undergraduates being educated at private schools.

• 57% of medical students came from the top

Private schools, which educate only 7% of all pupils, continue to have a stranglehold on our country’s top jobs. Of course parents should be free to send their children to the school of their choice. After all, every parent wants the best for

Foreword and summary

5

extended to cover 13 year olds. Third, Ofsted inspections of schools must routinely consider the extent to which pupils understand the options and challenges facing them as they move on to the next stages of their education, training and employment. There is a mixed picture on internships. The evidence suggests that having work experience or an internship on a CV is even more critical to finding employment now than it was even three years ago. Over one-third of this year’s graduate vacancies will be filled by applicants who have already worked for the employer as an undergraduate and, in some sectors, the proportion increases to 50% or more. The critical questions are who gets these opportunities and how do they get them. There have been welcome developments in Whitehall, where the Government is ending informal internships. All departments will advertise their existing professional internship schemes on a central Whitehall website, with outreach undertaken to promote internships and work experience to under-represented groups. Other sectors have a far less positive story to tell. In medicine, for example, work experience is a requirement for entry to medical school but getting access to it is often unstructured and informal. It is wide open to gaming by those in the know and indirectly discriminates against those who are not. We could uncover little systematic effort on the part of the medical profession to address this palpable unfairness. Similarly, despite The Speaker’s Parliamentary Placements Scheme being among the finest examples we have come across in any sector, most Parliamentary interns are still recruited informally, thus favouring those in the know and those with connections. Parliament as a whole must step up to the plate on this issue. It should be setting a good example – not a bad one – for other employers and professions. That is not the case at the moment. But the worst offender is the media industry. What seems to distinguish journalism from other professions is that interns are substitutes for what in other sectors would be regarded as functions carried out by mainstream paid employees. The practice in much of the media industry is more akin to treating interns as free labour. The problem with that is self-evident. It is possible only for

those who can afford to work for free. It means that others – perhaps with equal or better claims on a career in journalism – are excluded from consideration. Unpaid internships clearly disadvantage those from less affluent backgrounds who cannot afford to work for free for any length of time. They are a barrier to fair access and, indeed, to better social mobility. It is welcome that the Government has indicated that employers should go beyond their legal obligations and pay interns a wage that reflects the value of the intern’s contribution, but there is a long way to go before employers’ practices change to reflect these policy changes. That will require vigilance and continued effort on the part of government. It should find the best way to kitemark internships for their quality and should consider innovative means of offering financial support to disadvantaged young people wanting to undertake an internship. The exponential growth in internships in the professions adds up to a profound change in the British labour market. Access to work experience is a new hurdle that would-be professionals now have to clear before they can even get onto the recruitment playing field. Given their centrality to young people’s career prospects, internships should no longer be treated as part of the informal economy. They should be subject to similar rules to other parts of the labour market. That means introducing proper, transparent and fair processes for selection and reasonable terms of employment, including remuneration for internships. There is a similar uneven picture when it comes to how the professions go about selecting and recruiting their workforces. All too often those processes reinforce rather than reconfigure the socio-economic make-up of the professions. Recruiters end up selecting new people who are pretty much like the old. Unless fairness is more intentionally embedded into recruitment and selection procedures then it is unlikely that there will be anything other than a superficial shift in the social composition of the professions. For example, the UK’s leading employers target an average of only 19 universities for their graduate recruitment programmes. The overwhelming evidence suggests that too many professional employers still recruit

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Fair access to professional careers: A progress report

from too small a cohort of universities. Since those universities are the most socially exclusive in the country, these recruitment practices merely reinforce the social exclusivity of the professions. The marginal progress that has been made in the last few years to broaden the group of universities from which the professions recruit needs to be rapidly accelerated if the big growth in professional employment, predicted over the next decade, is to produce a social mobility dividend for Britain. Similarly, there is uneven recruitment across the UK nations and regions by the professions. The overwhelming majority of The Times Top 100 Graduate Employers were offering vacancies in London for 2012 but only 44% in the north east of England and 41% in East Anglia. It is little surprise that in the next few years almost half of the growth in jobs in higher-level occupations will occur in London and the south. Taking these predictions into account, it seems that regional disparities in access to a professional career are growing and are set to go on doing so. If employers are genuinely concerned about broadening the background of their workforces they will need to show far greater intentionality in expanding the parts of the UK from which they recruit. The same is true when it comes to creating more flexible entry routes into a professional career. In the 1950s, professional jobs were open to a wide variety of people with a range of qualifications. It was possible in a career such as journalism to work your way from the bottom, without a degree, to the top of the profession. The professions were socially mobile and, in turn, contributed to an upsurge in social mobility in the country. Today it remains important for social mobility that the professions, while retaining the highest standards, find ways of opening up opportunities for people at different stages of their lives, from more flexible entry through to career progression routes. Of course, most professions will want to recruit university graduates. Many professions, however, have become the exclusive preserve of those with a minimum of a first degree, reducing the employment opportunities for people without a graduate-level qualification. As ‘qualification­ inflation’ continues to take hold even in traditionally

non-graduate professions like nursing, the danger is that an exclusive reliance on the graduate labour market distorts their social intake just as it has distorted that of other professions. To ensure that there is greater diversity in the professions there need to be more diverse entry routes. Thankfully there have been some positive developments here. In 2009, Unleashing Aspiration reported that only four of The Times Top 100 Graduate Employers accepted non-graduate entrants. Today, around 50% offer some form of non-graduate entry point. This report argues in conclusion that during the last three years the professions have faced a challenging and turbulent time. The employment market remains fragile at best. In these circumstances there is a risk that improving fair access to professional careers becomes sidelined. Some of the evidence submitted for this report indicates that is happening. That is not to say that, in hearing from employers, professional bodies and regulators, progress is not being made both by individual employers and by some professions. Some organisations have been working to improve fair access for a long time and social mobility has become an integral part of what they do. It is also pleasing to see some regulatory bodies, for the first time, setting clear objectives on improving social mobility and offering robust challenge where progress is not seen to be made. And this report contains examples of exemplary good practice and highlights where genuine progress has been made. There are developments that are to be welcomed. Many individuals and organisations have put their shoulders to the wheel and are determined to continue doing so. Their efforts deserve praise. But the overall picture is far less positive. To recap:

• efforts to raise awareness and aspirations in

schools are too sporadic and too unspecific. They need to become universal and better co-ordinated a range of universities and regions. They need to widen their net lottery even as they become a key part of the formal professional labour market. They need to be treated as such

• too many employers recruit from too narrow • work experience and internships are still a

Foreword and summary

7

• selection processes and data collection – the

foundation stones for making progress – are too haphazard. They need to be given much more serious attention diversified but the graduate grip on the labour market is still strong. There needs to be a far bigger drive to open up the professions to a wider variety of people with different qualifications.

• entry to the professions has begun to be

These are significant areas for improvement. There is no one profession that can say it has cracked the fair access problem. Indeed, almost no profession has a clear plan for doing so. Unleashing Aspiration recommended that each profession should carry out a review of current practice on fair access with a view to developing practical ideas for improvement. It urged each profession to report publicly on these by the end of 2010, with a clear set of recommendations and an action plan for implementation. As far as we are aware, not a single profession has done so. This is profoundly disappointing and suggests that, despite rhetoric to the contrary, all too often the reality is that the fair access agenda remains sidelined in most professions. That is unacceptable and must change. The professions should now consider what steps they need to take. They need to massively up their game. The Government should do more to pressurise the professions to act. And the new Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission should report annually on what, if any, progress the professions are making.

If the appropriate action is taken to open up the professions to a broader array of talent, Britain can realise a social mobility dividend from the growth we are seeing in professional jobs. There is every chance that, like the 1950s, the next decade can be a golden era when it comes to opening up opportunities in our society. But that will not just happen. It has to be made. With a genuine national effort we can break the corrosive correlation between demography and destiny that so poisons British society – between being born poor and, in all likelihood, dying poor; between going to a low-achieving school and so ending up in a lowachieving job; between missing out on a university place and so missing out on a professional career. This is a prize we must not let slip through our fingers. Winning it requires far more effort on the part of the professions. And, as my next two reports will argue, on the part of universities and government too.

Rt. Hon Alan Milburn, Independent Reviewer on Social Mobility and Child Poverty May 2012

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Chapter 1 Introduction

This chapter sets out:

• The remit of this report • The long-term growth in professional employment • The headline findings of the 2009 report Unleashing Aspiration • The methodology and contents of this report

In August 2010, the Deputy Prime Minister appointed me as the Independent Reviewer on Social Mobility. In April 2011, the remit of my role was expanded to include child poverty, pending the establishment of a new statutory Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission. As Independent Reviewer, I have been assessing the progress that both the Government and wider society have been making in improving social mobility and eliminating child poverty. This is my first report. This report provides an assessment of activity around fair access to professional careers. It builds on the work that I led in 2009, when I chaired the Panel on Fair Access to the Professions.1 The Panel was asked to work with the professions to identify obstacles to access and how they could be removed. The Panel published its final report, Unleashing Aspiration,2 in the summer of 2009. Since then, of course, there has been a change in government. Nonetheless, social mobility has remained a core social policy priority, a point emphasised in the Government’s social mobility strategy Opening Doors, Breaking Barriers: A Strategy for Social Mobility,3 published last year.

Three years on from Unleashing Aspiration, equity of access to professional careers remains an important part of the social mobility jigsaw. If job opportunities are not accessible to all those with the requisite skills and talent, efforts being made to improve social mobility will continue to stall. That is especially important in the short term, given the unacceptably high levels of youth unemployment in our country. Social cohesion demands a reinvigorated drive to ensure that professional jobs are as evenly spread as possible across the social spectrum. That is particularly the case, given that professional employment has largely withstood the economic downturn. Graduate-level employment is the only form of employment that increased over the course of the recession.4 In contrast, employment rates for those holding no qualifications saw the biggest decline of 11.9%. This is also reflected in employment rates for those holding degreelevel qualifications, which are almost five times as high as employment rates for those holding no qualifications.

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

A professional career is a surer guarantor of economic security and social progress than it was even three years ago. This relative strength of the professional sector is set to continue. Labour market projections up to 2020 predict, along with gradual recovery in overall employment levels, continued evolution towards a more knowledgebased and service-intensive economy.5 With professional employment set to increase over the long term, there is hope that many more young people, regardless of their background, will be able to get on and move up. In the 1950s, the growth of professional employment helped to unleash an unparalleled wave of social mobility in Britain. Ensuring that today’s surge in professional employment produces a similar social dividend depends on removing any barriers to a professional career so that those with talent and potential experience a level playing field of opportunity. Unfortunately, Unleashing Aspiration found that, if anything, the professions had become more, not less, socially exclusive over time. Figure 1.1 tells its own story. The 2009 report predicted that, if these trends continue, a typical professional of the future will

now be growing up in a family that is better off than seven in ten of all families in the UK.6 The consequence will be that social mobility will slow down not speed up. Unleashing Aspiration identified six key areas for improvement: 1. Raising aspirations: new opportunities for young people to learn about the professions. 2. Schools: new opportunities to learn and choose careers. 3. Universities: new opportunities to pursue higher education. 4. Internships: new opportunities to get onto the professional career ladder. 5. Recruitment and selection: new opportunities for talent to shine. 6. Flexible professions: new opportunities for career progression. This report is a stocktake of progress on those themes as they relate directly to the professions. Shortly I will publish a separate report on social mobility and access to higher education, and in the summer a full report on trends in child poverty

Figure 1.1: Comparison of the family income background of typical professionals7
% difference between the average family’s income and the family income of the household in which the typical professional grew up  70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0

Professions with a falling proportion of members who grew up in families with above-average incomes

Professions with a rising proportion of members who grew up in families with above-average incomes

N ur se St s oc an k b Sc d ro ien tr ke a r m tists ders s ed a ica nd l c ot ar he ee r rs En gin ee rs

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1970 birth cohort

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Chapter 1 Introduction

11

and social mobility. These three reports will form part of a formal handover to the new Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission. This report restates the case for fair access to the professions and why it matters. It assesses progress since 2009 against four key criteria:

teachers, conducted by b-live, a social enterprise, and analysed by the Education and Employers Taskforce and Dr Deirdre Hughes. Evidence hearings The team held evidence sessions attended by major employers, professional bodies and regulatory bodies. Bilateral evidence The review team has met with key stakeholders in the field of social mobility and access to the professions. In addition, bilaterals have been held with representatives from a range of professional sectors.

• Raising aspirations: what employers and

government are doing to help young people to learn about and aspire to have a professional career employers and government are doing to make internships transparent and accessible to help people to get onto the professional career ladder employers have taken to ensure their recruitment and selection processes are genuinely open to the widest range of talent put in place to provide a wider range of routes into a professional career.

• Work experience and internships: what

• Recruitment and selection: what steps

Outline of this report
Chapter 2 sets out the case for why promoting fair access to the professions needs to remain a priority issue for government, employers and wider society. It also highlights the current employment picture, employment projection and the overall progress since 2009 that employers and professional bodies have made in promoting fair access. This high-level analysis is followed by a more detailed look at four particular professional sectors. For each sector, this includes setting out what the current workforce looks like; activities being undertaken by that profession to improve social mobility; and the remaining challenges, next steps and recommendations for further action. Chapter 3 looks at the progress that has been made to improve fair access to a professional career in the legal profession. Chapter 4 looks at the progress that has been made to improve fair access to a professional career in the medical profession. Chapter 5 looks at the progress that has been made to improve fair access to a professional career in journalism and the media professions. Chapter 6 looks at the progress that has been made to improve fair access to a professional career in Parliament and the civil service. Chapter 7 sets out the progress made by government through policies designed to improve access to the professions.

• Flexible professions: what measures have been
It sets out next steps for the professions, the Government and the new Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission.

Methodology
My team took evidence from a wide range of sources. A list of the organisations consulted and those which submitted evidence to the call for evidence (issued in May 2011) is attached as Annex A. Desk work The team reviewed research and statistics, think tank publications and academic journals in order to construct an informed picture of the current state of play. Call for evidence The team issued a call for evidence in May 2011 to around 200 professional bodies and employers. Each was invited to send progress updates. More than 100 responses were submitted. b-live survey This survey draws on a study of aspirations, surveying young people, parents and their

13

Chapter 2 Progress in the professions – what has changed since 2009

This chapter sets out:

• Why fair access to the professions matters • The current employment picture • Progress that employers and professional bodies have made • What more needs to be done

Why social mobility matters
There is an overwhelming moral and financial case for continuing efforts to improve social mobility. It is not fair that the circumstances of birth should go on to dictate the opportunities available for the rest of an individual’s life. As the April 2011 social mobility strategy1 so clearly sets out, social cohesion depends on opportunities being more evenly available across society so that talent and potential – not fate and background – determine people’s ability to progress. If anything, the case for a bigger drive to galvanise social mobility has grown since 2009. The global financial crisis, the subsequent recession, the current sluggish state of the British economy and the process of fiscal consolidation have all taken their social toll. Since the publication of Unleashing Aspiration in July 2009, unemployment has risen by 181,000 and youth unemployment (for those not in full-time education) by 261,000.2 Inequalities – social and geographic – have widened.3 Poverty, among children in particular, is likely to have increased.4

A broad swathe of public and political opinion has coalesced around a deep social concern about rising inequality. A new consensus has begun to emerge that unearned wealth for a few at the top, stagnating incomes for those in the middle and deepening disadvantage for many at the bottom is not a sustainable social proposition. People are looking for action so that our society becomes more open, more mobile and more fair. Government has a key leadership role to play but it is not a job for government alone. Other social actors will need to play their part – parents and communities, schools and universities, employers and professions. The professions have a critical role. They are a key and growing source of employment opportunities. As the society which they serve becomes ever more complex and heterogeneous, the professions themselves will need to keep pace by becoming ever more diverse. In an increasingly competitive global market, they will need to do more to make the most of the widest possible pool of talent. There is both a pressing social and a self-interested case for their becoming exemplars for the sort of

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

open society that public opinion increasingly craves. Sadly, all too often the professions as a whole have been behind the social curve. If anything, the evidence suggests that since 2009, taken as a whole, the professions – despite some pockets of considerable progress – have done too little to catch up.

Today there are an estimated total of 12.8 million professionals in our country. In total 42% of all employment in the UK is in the professions.15 A recent report by University Alliance found that during the global financial crisis and subsequent economic recession employment in professional occupations continued to grow, while the largest job losses were in routine manual and non-manual occupations.16 Occupations with a high proportion of graduates were less affected by job losses. According to the Confederation of British Industry (CBI),17 those working in more highly skilled occupations tended to fare better over the course of the recession, with employment in these areas increasing (as did employment in caring, leisure and other service occupations). Employment in all other occupations decreased. Graduate-level employment is the only form of employment to have increased over the course of the recession (by 3.6%). In the short term, of course, some forms of professional employment are still feeling the effects of the economic downturn. Overall, a small decrease in vacancy levels of 1.2% is predicted for 2011/12. Nonetheless, some sectors such as law and engineering are planning to increase their recruitment numbers significantly. The future will see continued growth in professional employment. The UK Commission for Employment and Skills found in its most recent labour market assessment that there is likely to be a slow recovery from recession, with the UK economy generating around 1.5 million additional jobs by 2020. Managers, professionals and associate professional roles provide the most significant increases. Around 2 million additional jobs in these occupational categories are projected by 2020.18 This offsets projected decreases in a number of other categories, such as skilled trades occupations. The shape of the UK workforce is changing. The share of total employment taken by whitecollar occupations is projected to rise from 42% to 46% between 2010 and 2020. Figure 2.1 shows employment projections for the nine major occupations in the period from 2010 to 2020, comparing them with developments over the previous decade. A rather faster pace of change, with accelerated growth in professional roles and bigger declines in trade and blue-collar

The current picture
Who are the professions? There is no single definition of the professions but for the purposes of this report, we use the definition set out in Unleashing Aspiration. Typically, they have some or all of the following traits:

• Recognisable entry points – for example, with
standard qualification requirements

• Codes of ethics – for example, that set out
aspects of professional responsibility

• Systems for self-regulation – for example,

setting and regulating standards for professional development development.

• A strong sense of vocation and professional
Today, the biggest professions are in engineering (5.6 million);5 local government (2.6 million);6 healthcare (1.4 million);7 and financial and insurance services (1.1 million).8 However, smaller professions, such as accountancy (286,000)9 and law (around 165,000),10,11 remain high-quality, high-status, high-reward professions. Since 2009, the professions that have grown in number the most are IT and telecommunications. Those that have seen the biggest falls in employment are investment banking and fund management.12 The labour market Much of the second half of the 20th century in the UK was characterised by economic and industrial change which increased income mobility and the number of professional, managerial and administrative occupations.13 While there were 2.2 million professional posts and 3.1 million associate professional posts in 1984, these rose to 3.9 million and 4.9 million respectively in 2009,14 when Unleashing Aspiration was published.

Chapter 2 Progress in the professions – what has changed since 2009

15

Table 2.1: Expected percentage change in vacancies from 2010/11 to 2011/12 by sector, excluding oil companies and chemical or pharmaceutical companies19 Sector IT/telecommunications company Construction company or consultancy Public sector Energy, water or utility company Engineering or industrial company Fast-moving consumer goods company Insurance company Law firm Banking or financial services Retail Transport or logistics company Accountancy or professional services firm Consulting or business services firm Investment bank or fund managers occupations, is now expected than was the case over the previous decade. The professions will account for approximately 83% of all new jobs in Britain in the next decade. They hold the key to improving social mobility. This changing labour market provides Britain with both a major economic and a social opportunity. 32.5% 29.4% 27.8% 16.0% 10.0% 6.4% 5.9% 5.4% 0.4% –2.9% –4.9% –12.9% –16.0% –41.7% If the professions can genuinely open their doors to the most talented people, then the UK can improve its competitive position in the global economy. If the professions can broaden the background of those they employ, then the UK can speed up social mobility and contribute to greater social cohesion.

Figure 2.1: Employment changes from 1990–2000 to 2010–2020
All industries Managers, directors and senior officials Professional occupations Associate professional and technical Administrative and secretarial Skilled trades occupations Caring, leisure and other services Sales and customer service Process, plant and machine operatives Elementary occupations –2,000 0 2,000 –2,000 0 2,000 –1,000 0 1,000 1990 to 2000 2000 to 2010 thousands 2010 to 2020

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

The socio-economic make-up of the professions
There is, however, a long way to go to make a reality of that opportunity. The latest longitudinal data21 we have on social mobility and access to professional careers is from the 1970 birth cohort, as set out in Unleashing Aspiration. It found that the overall trend is a growing social exclusivity in the professions. In nine of the 12 professions examined, there was an increase in people coming from better-off families between the 1958 and the 1970 birth cohorts. It is difficult to assess trends in access rates to the professions for the most recent generation. Latest data from the Higher Education Statistics Agency,22 however, on the socio-economic background of undergraduates across a range of vocational degrees shows that:

• raise aspiration, especially in schools • make work experience and internships more
transparent and accessible

• reform recruitment and selection procedures • provide a wider range of routes into a
professional career. As preparation for this report, a call for evidence was issued in the summer of 2011. Employers, including The Times Top 100 Graduate Employers and regulatory and professional bodies, were asked to provide evidence on what action they have taken to address the barriers to fair access highlighted in Unleashing Aspiration. Just over 100 submissions were received from a cross-section of employers and professional bodies. The legal sector provided the most responses, with the majority of returns from law firms. The financial services sector (banking and accountancy) also responded well to the call for evidence. It is also pleasing to see sectors engaging with this agenda that were not involved with the work of the Panel on Fair Access to the Professions, such as retail and some of The Times Top 100 Graduate Employers. These submissions have been extremely helpful in providing a snapshot of what is happening both within and between sectors. A number of emerging themes have been identified as a result. The overall sense from the submissions is of a galvanised effort on the part of many organisations and individuals to engage with the fair access agenda. In particular, many young people working in the professions seem to be highly motivated to encourage successor generations to aspire to a professional career. The range and depth of this activity is to be commended. There is, however, a very long way to go. The glass ceiling has been scratched but not broken. In the sections below, I examine what the professions have been doing in the four areas of activity identified by Unleashing Aspiration to assess where they could make the biggest impact in driving fair access.

• while 40% of engineering undergraduates were • architecture has seen a more significant drop

from the three highest socio-economic classes in 2002/03, this had dropped to 38% by 2010/11 in the number of undergraduates from the top three socio-economic classes, from 42% in 2002/03 to 36% in 2010/11.

These figures echo the pattern we will see in Chapters 3, 4 and 5 on the social background of those entering medicine, the law and the media. The general picture seems to be of mainly minor changes in the social composition of the professions. At the top especially, the professions remain dominated by a social elite. That is neither beneficial for the professions themselves nor conducive to a more mobile society.

A progress update from the professions
Unleashing Aspiration made 88 recommendations about what needed to be done to make access to and progress through a professional career more genuinely meritocratic. Some of those recommendations were targeted at schools, universities and government rather than the professions themselves. There were, however, four main areas of activity that were specifically recommended for employers and professions to take forward. These were:

Chapter 2 Progress in the professions – what has changed since 2009

17

Figure 2.2: Number of respondents by sector to call for evidence
25 Number of respondents by sector to call for evidence

20

15

10

5

0

rv Arc ice h s a itec nd tu co re, ns bu tru ild ct ing io n Ar Ch t ar Ca s ity te an rin d g Co vol un ns um tar y er go od s Fin En er an En gy ce an gine d er ac co ing un ta n Ins cy IT ur an an ce d te M lec an om ag em s en tc La M w on ed su ia M ed and ltan ici cy ne jou an rna l d he ism alt hc a Pe re rs Pu onn e bli cs l ec t Pu or bli sh ing Sc ien ce

Raising aspiration
For the purposes of this report, raising aspiration is about how young people are encouraged to aspire towards a professional career. We know that aspirations for success are high among the majority of young people but there seems to be a disparity between young people from different socio­ economic backgrounds in levels of knowledge and confidence about routes into professional careers. For example, 56% of children whose parents are employed in the professions also wish to have a professional career compared with only 13% of children whose parents are in semi-skilled occupations.23 This may reflect a difference in the extent to which young people have access to good quality careers advice, be that through family and friends or schools and careers services. Preliminary findings from b-live, a social enterprise, which is conducting a national aspirations survey among young people, endorse this suggestion.24 While the primary responsibility for careers advice and general aspiration-raising lies with

se

parents and schools, they cannot do it on their own. It is unreasonable to expect them to have expert knowledge on every kind of employment opportunity available. That is why employers have a role to play in filling in information gaps about what a career in their organisation or sector looks like and how young people can go about securing a professional career. From the submissions to the call for evidence, it is clear that many professions’ primary focus is on outreach activity. Many respondents highlighted the work they do within their local communities and with schools. Examples included:

• virtual mentoring in schools across the UK • sponsoring a specific school that is performing
badly

• asking schools to nominate a small number

of pupils with the potential to gain a place at a ‘top’ university or to pursue a career in a specific profession, and providing support for those pupils.

Re t

ail

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

Figure 2.3: Relatives at university versus no relatives at university and interest in applying to a selective university
35
30
Percentage of respondents 25 20 15 10 5 0 Yes definitely Yes probably Yes possibly No Unsure

Relatives at university (Years 7, 8 and 9)

No relatives at university (Years 7, 8 and 9)

Figure 2.4: Free school meals versus non-free school meals and post-school options
50

40 Percentage of respondents

30

20

10

0 Go straight to university Gap year then university Get an apprenticeship Get a job Don’t know

Free school meals (Years 10 and 11)

Non-free school meals (Years 10 and 11)

Chapter 2 Progress in the professions – what has changed since 2009

19

Case Study: J.P. Morgan Chase Foundation and Social Mobility Foundation
J.P. Morgan is working with the Social Mobility Foundation to introduce a residential banking/finance pilot to the charity’s established Aspiring Professionals Programme (APP). The pilot will focus on 50 high-achieving young people from under-represented backgrounds from across the country, who will be taking part in the first year of APP and have an interest in banking/finance. As part of the pilot, the students will be encouraged to enter the universities’ firms from which J.P. Morgan recruits and provided with the necessary skills to make competitive applications for internships/ jobs with prestigious financial services firms through:

The amount and variety of activity being undertaken is striking. There is clearly a lot of effort that has been invested in supporting and working with young people. There were, however, examples where different professions are working in the same part of the country targeting the same schools. That can lead to some schools being overloaded while others are ignored. It also runs the risk of duplication of effort and resources, particularly for schools in close proximity to the City. The Law Society, in its response to the call for evidence, said “the proliferation of initiatives designed to address some of the barriers to fair access have created confusion”. It is important that such activity is delivered in a co-ordinated, sustainable way so that schools and employers can manage their resources more effectively to allow as many young people as possible to benefit from such programmes and initiatives. PRIME, the new legal sector initiative that offers good-quality work experience opportunities, is an excellent example of a sector-wide collaboration.

• e-mentoring with a mentor from
J.P. Morgan

• tailored visits to Russell Group
universities

Case Study: PRIME
PRIME is a commitment by the legal profession to provide fair access to quality work experience for young people from less privileged backgrounds. Supported by the Law Societies of England and Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland, and The Sutton Trust, PRIME sets out, for the first time, minimum standards for whom work experience should reach and what it should achieve. It commits member firms to providing work experience that gives an insight into the range of careers available in the legal profession and the potential routes into those careers. A group of 23 of the UK’s largest law firms launched PRIME in September 2011 and over 75 have now signed up across the UK, 41 of which have offices outside London. Ensuring that firms meet their commitments under the initiative is crucial and its members are monitored and will be evaluated annually by the National Federation for Educational Research.

• university and skills workshops • two-week residential work placements
at J.P. Morgan in London, comprising structured work experience to give the young people a real insight into the career they aspire to join, and a range of university/skills training workshops and social/networking activities in the evenings guidance on aptitude tests and interviews.

• personal statement checking support,
Crucially, the participants will continue to be supported through their A-levels and university with the aim of giving them the right blend of skills and experience to be able to work for firms such as J.P. Morgan when they graduate.

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

It is important that schemes such as PRIME are not just London-centric but are accessible to young people across the country. The PRIME model may also be something for other sectors to consider adopting or adapting in order to reduce duplication of work experience programmes and help to ensure that all schools, rather than a few, are able to benefit. Clearly, many outreach initiatives, particularly those focusing on Years 9, 10 and 11, will take some time to have an impact, especially if the purpose of outreach work is to change the workforce demographic. Tracking and monitoring of young people from school and sixth form colleges to university and beyond is a long-term commitment that is not without its challenges. In conversations with research organisations, it is clear that there is a lack of robust evidence about what works in terms of employer outreach activity. Lessons could be learnt from the experience of universities. For example, the evaluation of Aimhigher25 provides some evidence of the types of outreach that have the greatest transformative impact. Unfortunately, most outreach initiatives do not have an evaluation framework in place. This is something that should be addressed.

• summer placement: usually undertaken by

undergraduates during university summer holidays, to give them both a taster of a particular organisation and a chance to showcase their potential for a permanent role.

Work experience and internships are usually organised between employers and individuals, whereas sandwich and summer placements tend to be organised between employers and universities, and often contribute formal credits towards university courses. Internships – and work experience more generally – are part and parcel of a modern economy, and increasingly they have become the first rung on the ladder to professional employment. They are an important part of the recruitment process, giving individuals a taster of what working in an organisation is like, helping them to build up experience and skills and giving them a chance to showcase their potential to employers. Employability skills are a top priority for business. The most recent Education and Skills Survey conducted by the CBI found that, for the third year in a row, employability skills were rated the most important by graduate recruiters. Four in five (82%) value these skills, which include the ability to problem solve, work as part of a team and manage time effectively. Employers also reported that they were on the lookout for graduates in certain subject disciplines and 50% take applicants’ degree results into consideration. Having relevant work experience is also ranked very highly by employers and is a key factor for two-thirds of those surveyed.26

Work experience and internships
Employers can offer a range of schemes that offer individuals a chance to build the experience and knowledge needed to secure a professional position for that employer or sector. For example:

• work experience: usually short-term and

flexible, typically offered to 16–18 year olds to give them a taster of working in a particular sector typically offered to undergraduates, graduates and non-graduates

• internship: usually three to six-month positions, • sandwich placement, formally part of a university
sandwich course: usually a one-year full-time position, undertaken in the second year of a four-year course, related to the course subject

Chapter 2 Progress in the professions – what has changed since 2009

21

Figure 2.5: Most important factors considered when recruiting graduates
100%

80%

60%

40%

20%

0% Employability skills Relevant work experience/industrial placement 2011 Degree subject Degree result University attended

2008

The Wilson Review27 also sets out a strong case for the importance of work experience, placements and internships, saying “lack of work experience appears as a key barrier to young people, including graduates, in securing employment”. It found that all three types of work experience are extremely valuable to students.28 The Wolf Review29 highlighted that recruitment is an extremely expensive process, and therefore employers were looking for strong signs that new employees had the potential to add value and progress within their business. Wolf found that employers saw work experience as the most important signal for this potential. The evidence suggests that having work experience or an internship on a CV is even more critical now to finding employment after graduating from university than it was even three years ago.30 At least half the entry-level vacancies advertised by City investment banks and the leading law firms are likely to be filled by graduates who have already completed work experience with the employer. The Association of Graduate Recruiters31 also found that an estimated 36% of this year’s graduate vacancies will be filled by applicants who have already worked for the employer as an undergraduate and in some sectors the proportion

increases to 50% or more. Furthermore, more than half of graduate recruiters said it was either “not very likely” or “not at all likely” that a graduate who had had no previous work experience – either with their organisation or at another employer – would be successful during their selection process and receive a job offer. Many recruiters commented that, irrespective of the academic results that a graduate had achieved, it would be very hard for an applicant to demonstrate the skills and competencies that they were looking for if they had not had any prior work experience. Almost all of the UK’s leading graduate employers provide work experience programmes for students and recent graduates, often through university sandwich courses or summer placements. The largest numbers of placements are at the investment banks, which for 2011/12 had more than 2,700 internships and other experiences available. Investment banking is one of just three sectors where the number of placements on offer from employers outstrips or matches the number of permanent jobs available to graduates.32 Despite the strong evidence that a sandwich placement year improves employability opportunities,33 there has been a decline in this

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

practice in recent years. In 2002/03, 9.5% of the total full-time student cohort undertook a placement. But by 2009/10, this had fallen to only 7.2%.34 A small number of universities provide the majority of sandwich placements, including the Universities of Aston, Bath, Bournemouth, Brunel, Loughborough and Surrey.35 From this we can see that, although work experience is becoming increasingly important to a wide range of employers, opportunities for young people in the university placement sector to gain it are reducing. This report endorses Professor Tim Wilson’s recommendation that every fulltime undergraduate student should have the opportunity to experience a structured, universityapproved undergraduate internship during their period of study. Internships are becoming a core foundation of the modern labour market in professional employment. The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) estimates that threequarters of the employers it surveys regularly employ interns.36 This is the equivalent of 280,000 organisations across the UK; an increase from summer 2009 when just 13% of employers surveyed by CIPD planned to take on interns.37 There has been great concern expressed about the fact that many internships are unpaid. An evaluation38 of the Graduate Talent Pool, a government-funded internship website, in 2011 found that there was considerable disparity between those sectors that offered a majority of paid internships and those which did not. For example, only 37% of cultural and creative, 44% of media-related, 58% of financial and professional services and 65% of marketing, advertising and public relations internships were paid. Other sectors offered a majority of paid opportunities, including manufacturing and engineering (85%), the built environment (78%) and government and public administration (98%). Following new quality assurance processes being introduced in October 2011, each vacancy is now checked to ensure it offers a genuine opportunity, with concerns about unpaid internships and the National Minimum Wage taken up with the employer. Since its launch, the website has carried approximately 44,000 vacancies, around 60% of

which were paid. Since the new quality assurance process began, the number of unpaid internships has declined significantly. For example, of the 2,058 vacancies advertised on the site in February 2012, only 2% were unpaid vacancies offered by business (a further 27% were unpaid voluntary work placements with charities, which are exempt from National Minimum Wage legislation). A 2011 CBI survey39 also found that more employers offering internship opportunities were willing to pay their interns. Some 89% of employers said they paid their interns at or above the appropriate minimum wage. Just 13% of those offering internships paid expenses-only and none said that they paid below the National Minimum Wage. During our deliberations and in the responses we received to our call for evidence, however, we came across few examples of internships that were well remunerated. L’Oréal was a rare example to the contrary. It recruits more than 80 interns a year through its website and pays them £18,000 pro rata. L’Oréal is also planning to reserve up to five internships for students from disadvantaged backgrounds. Some have argued that young people could be making a sound investment if they take up a highquality but unpaid internship, since it increases their prospects of finding paid employment. Internocracy, a social enterprise, disagrees. It argues that “unpaid internships filter out swathes of young people from the first step of the career ladder – particularly in the most influential sectors such as media and politics – and offer a fast track to a chosen few”.40 Similarly, a report produced under the auspices of the Creative Industries Council in January 2012 argued that “it is not sustainable for creative businesses to be based around exploitative labour practices such as interns working unpaid for significant periods of time”.41 This report echoes those concerns. Unpaid internships and informal ‘friends and family schemes’ are still far too prevalent across the professions. Informal work experience opportunities are difficult, if not impossible, to gain unless young people have family contacts to help them to gain access to an employer. Unpaid internships clearly disadvantage those from less affluent backgrounds who cannot afford to work

Chapter 2 Progress in the professions – what has changed since 2009

23

for free for any length of time. They are a barrier to fair access and, indeed, to better social mobility. The evidence that we have collected – despite some examples to the contrary, such as the employers that have signed up to the Social Mobility Business Compact – continues to point in the direction of connection rather than ability being the key that unlocks a work experience opportunity or an internship. It is bad for business to restrict the pool of potential applicants to those with a personal connection or those who can afford to accept unpaid work. It reduces the talent that is available. Furthermore, reserving opportunities for the relatives of employees or clients, when having work experience on a CV is critical to securing a job, will inevitably contribute to a narrowing of fair access to professional careers for those without connections. The explosion in internships in the professions adds up to a profound change in the British labour market. Access to work experience is a new hurdle that would-be professionals now have to clear before they can even get onto the recruitment playing field. Given their centrality to young people’s career prospects, internships should no longer be treated as part of the informal economy. They should be subject to similar rules as other parts of the labour market. That means introducing proper, transparent and fair processes for selection and reasonable terms of employment, including remuneration for internships. A Common Best Practice Code for High-Quality Internships42 was published in the summer of 2011 by leading professionals, with the support of the TUC and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, whose Professions Collaborative Forum organised the development of the Code. It sends out a clear signal to employers that they should be providing fair and high-quality internships. It should be adopted by employers across the professions. The Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission should assess whether they are doing so.

Recruitment and selection processes
How employers go about recruiting and selecting their employees helps to determine the sort of people they employ. Ideally, those processes should be neutral and should produce outcomes that match business need with candidates’ capability. This does not always happen. All too often the way the professions go about recruiting and selecting reinforces rather than reconfigures the socio­ economic make-up of their workforces. Recruiters end up selecting new people that are pretty much like the old. Unless fairness is more intentionally embedded into recruitment and selection procedures, then it is unlikely that there will be anything other than a superficial shift in the social composition of the professions. There are several elements to consider. Which universities employers recruit from A university degree is the key to a professional career. Most professionals are graduates. Over time this has become increasingly the case. Unleashing Aspiration raised concerns that too many professional employers targeted only a small number of universities as part of their recruitment rounds. It found that around 70% of graduate recruiters targeted fewer than 20 university campuses,43 meaning that large numbers of able graduates were missing out on learning about graduate-level vacancies. Three years on, the Association of Graduate Recruiters has found that this practice is still prevalent among employers. Just over one-third targeted between one and ten UK universities in 2010/11.44 Although it is encouraging to see that a further 27% were expanding their recruitment to include more than 20 universities, recent research on the 2011/12 graduate market shows that the UK’s leading employers target an average of only 19 universities (see Figure 2.6).45 Many professional employers are continuing to market to and recruit from a small number of the most highly selective universities, rather than promote their organisation and available employment opportunities to a broader mix of institutions.

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

Figure 2.6: Number of universities targeted by top employers in 2011/12
25%

20%

15%

10%

5%

0% 5 or fewer universities 6–10 universities 11–15 universities 16–20 universities 21–25 universities 26–30 universities 31–40 More than universities 40 universities

The five universities most often targeted by Britain’s top graduate employers in 2011/12 were Cambridge, London (including Imperial College, University College London and the London School of Economics), Manchester, Nottingham and Oxford. These universities are among the most highly selective in the country but they also have some of the lowest proportions of students from disadvantaged backgrounds, as can be seen in Figure 2.7.46 The overwhelming evidence suggests that too many professional employers still recruit from too small a cohort of universities. Since those universities are the most socially exclusive in the country, these recruitment practices merely reinforce the social exclusivity of the professions. The slow progress that has been made in the last few years to broaden the universities from which the professions recruit needs to be rapidly accelerated if the big growth in professional employment predicted over the next decade is to produce a social mobility dividend for Britain.

Where employers recruit In 2009, Unleashing Aspiration highlighted the uneven distribution of professional vacancies across the UK, with the majority in London or the South East.47 Recent evidence48 has done nothing to allay this concern, as can be seen in Figure 2.8. The overwhelming majority of The Times Top 100 Graduate Employers were offering vacancies in London for 2012 and half plan to hire new recruits for positions in the South East. The North West, the Midlands and the South West had the next highest numbers of employers recruiting graduates, followed by Yorkshire and the North East. Of all the English regions, East Anglia was the least likely to yield graduate vacancies – only 41% of employers had opportunities there in 2011.49 Recent forecasts50 show that the southern part of England is expected to see more rapid employment growth than the devolved nations and the northern regions of England. Almost half of the growth in jobs in higher-level occupations will occur in London, the South East and the East of England.

Chapter 2 Progress in the professions – what has changed since 2009

25

Figure 2.7: Participation of under-represented groups in higher education*
University of Oxford

University of Cambridge

Imperial College

University College London

London School of Economics

University of Nottingham

University of Manchester

Sector average in England 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100

% from state schools or colleges

% from NS-SEC 4-7

% from low participation neighbourhoods *Young full-time undergraduate entrants

Figure 2.8: Location of graduate vacancies at leading UK employers in 2012
90% 80% 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% London North West Midlands South East Yorkshire North East East Anglia

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

Taking these predictions into account, it seems that regional disparities in access to a professional career are growing and are set to go on doing so. If employers are genuinely concerned about broadening the background of their workforces, they will need to show far greater intentionality in broadening the parts of the UK from which they recruit. How employers select Getting selection processes right means that doors are opened to a wider pool of talent. Unleashing Aspiration made clear that it is for individual employers to decide on the selection processes that work best for them but that some processes risk obstructing equity of access, such as:

• using school-blind or university-blind application
forms

• training for staff in human resources to be aware
of subconscious bias. These approaches are more conducive to a fair selection process and are far more likely to deliver a more balanced intake of professionals. From the evidence submitted for this report, it seems that, sadly, these initiatives – although gathering pace – are still not the norm across professional employers. It is time they were. Collecting workforce socio-economic data The collection and publication of data on gender and race have helped to bring about significant change in employers’ behaviours. Shining a spotlight on who works where has also helped to bring about a more diverse workforce. In Unleashing Aspiration, it was recommended that employers consider collecting data on the socio-economic profile of their employees to ensure they had a fully rounded picture of their workforces. Such data collection would also allow employers to evaluate the impact of their activity on improving the diversity of their workforces and ensure that resources are being used in the most effective way. It has been argued that collecting socio-economic data is a bureaucratic burden and involves unwarranted and unwanted intrusion into employees’ backgrounds. When data first started to be collected about gender and ethnicity, it was an equally contentious issue and was opposed on the same grounds. Over time, however, it has become the norm and has become viewed as a benefit to employers determined to change the profile of their workforces in order to make them more socially representative. The call for evidence threw up some pockets of good practice when it comes to data collection across the professions. For example, a number of firms have recently introduced additional questions into their online diversity monitoring forms. These will allow employers to gather data and map progress. But they were very much the exception, not the rule. That is disappointing.

• opacity in recruitment processes, for example
not providing sample online tests if using assessment centres or setting out what is expected of applicants than recognising wider achievements

• over-reliance on academic qualifications rather • the plethora of organisations that charge to help
people through selection processes, which can disadvantage those who cannot afford the fees or those who are unaware that such tools exist.

Selection processes vary considerably in how applicants are assessed and appointed. Some employers may use selection criteria that can inadvertently favour some applicants over others. Others prioritise those with a family connection. For example, a number of firms give financial incentives to employees to refer people they know to the recruitment process. Contributors to the call for evidence provided a range of examples of what they are doing to ensure they advertise for and recruit as diverse a range of employees as possible. Examples included:

• interviewing candidates in less formal,
less intimidating surroundings including social media

• using different channels for advertising vacancies, • appointing diversity managers

Chapter 2 Progress in the professions – what has changed since 2009

27

Case Study: Tate
To open up access to careers in the arts sector, Tate is hosting 20 paid traineeships in its Collection Care division between October 2011 and November 2014. This initiative is funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund’s Skills for the Future programme, a national scheme that aims to improve workforce diversity and address skills shortages. Each placement lasts for 18 months, is based primarily at Tate’s London sites and is paid at London Living Wage level, as are all Tate’s Londonbased interns. Trainees undertake a broad range of professional roles, from art handling to conservation science. The majority of trainees will gain an NVQ Level 3 Diploma in Cultural Heritage by the end of the placement, giving them the skills, experience and qualifications they need to develop a career in the arts sector. The programme aims to broaden access to the sector for people that may not have considered such a career in the past, and particularly for non-graduates. Tate is working with a diverse range of partners in order to reach candidates from beyond the sector’s traditional workforce, including Jobcentre Plus, further education colleges, local universities and community partners. Recruitment focuses on enthusiasm and job aptitude, rather than previous experience in the cultural sector. Through Skills for the Future, Tate also aims to increase the range, quality and accessibility of work-based learning opportunities, not only across the entire organisation, but throughout the cultural heritage sector. The Legal Services Board is one of the few regulatory bodies to have started to get to grips with this issue. From December 2012, it will introduce annual data collection and monitoring. This development, which is to be commended, is explored in more detail in Chapter 3. The civil service has also begun to monitor its senior civil service intake following a specific recommendation in the 2009 report asking it to do so. The progress

the civil service is making towards achieving a more socially diverse workforce is discussed in Chapter 6. Despite these isolated examples of progress, nearly three years on from Unleashing Aspiration, it seems that many professions and employers are still not systematically collecting the socio­ economic information that will allow them to really understand the make-up of their workforces. It is recommended that employers and professional bodies – including regulators – redouble their efforts in this area. One development which they might find useful is a new Social Mobility Toolkit which provides employers, professional bodies and regulators with a template questionnaire so they can assess the socio-economic make-up of their profession.51 The Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission should look for evidence that it has been adopted.

Entry and progression routes
In the 1950s, professional jobs were open to a wide variety of people with a variety of qualifications. It was possible in a career such as journalism to work your way from the bottom, without a degree, to the top of the profession. The professions were socially mobile and, in turn, contributed to an upsurge in social mobility in the country. Today, it remains important for social mobility that the professions, while retaining the highest standards, find ways of opening up opportunities for people at different stages of their lives, from more flexible entry through to career progression routes. Not every young person makes the right initial career choice and people may wish to train for and enter professional careers later in life. Many people aspiring to the professions might want to access a career through different training routes or work their way up from entry-level routes. For aspirant professionals from non-traditional backgrounds, more flexible work patterns might be required. Today’s professionals demand more choice and control in how they develop, and they increasingly want to move between different career sectors over their lifetime. Unleashing Aspiration suggested that employers focus on two strategies here to help to diversify their workforces – opening up entry to a professional career to many more

28

Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

non-graduates and ensuring people, women especially, have sufficient flexibility to be able to progress in their careers. Encouraging flexible entry routes Of course, most professions will want to recruit university graduates. Many professions, however, have become the exclusive preserve of those with a minimum of a first degree, reducing the employment opportunities for people without a graduate-level qualification. As ‘qualification­ inflation’ continues to take hold even in traditionally non-graduate professions such as nursing, the danger is that an exclusive reliance on the graduate labour market distorts such professions’ social intake just as it has distorted that of other professions. To ensure there is greater diversity in the professions, there need to be more diverse entry routes. Unleashing Aspiration highlighted a number of options open to employers who wish to recruit in more creative ways, such as school leaver programmes, foundation courses or apprenticeship schemes. Tate, in its response to the call for evidence, acknowledged the “characterisation of the museum sector as being over-reliant on degrees and higher degrees for recruitment … and would welcome greater support for employers in making the shift from recruiting at graduate level to adopting more vocational training methods”. Some sectors have developed a high degree of flexibility for routes into their workforce – most notably retail, financial services and insurance. Similarly, the engineering and accountancy professions have consciously constructed ladders of opportunity that allow non-graduates to enter and progress in a professional career. They are to be commended. Apprenticeship schemes are one of the most common alternative routes into professional employment, along with school leavers’ programmes. Sectors such as engineering have reported that they would consider taking on more apprentices in the future to remedy their problem in recruiting engineering graduates with the right skills level. Businesses in other sectors are also considering apprenticeships in the future because of concerns about a possible drop in the number of young people going to university.52 In 2009,

Unleashing Aspiration reported that only four of The Times Top 100 Graduate Employers accepted non-graduate entrants. Today, around 50% offer some form of non-graduate entry points. That is good progress. Those professions that have not yet designed alternative routes into professional employment or reduced their reliance on the graduate labour market should now consider how to follow where others have led. Encouraging flexible progression routes In a modern and flexible economy, professional opportunities should be available to those who choose to enter a career at a later stage or move career. The professions need to adapt to the increased likelihood of people wishing to change career. For example, only a relatively small number of employers recognise qualifications and accreditations gained in other sectors, making it difficult for professionals to move between sectors without having to retrain or take a step back. In other sectors, such as law, it can be difficult for those returning to work after a break to pick up their careers. Skills and confidence can be lost and employers need to find ways of supporting returners to find their feet. The call for evidence provided a far from clear picture on what organisations are doing to ensure mid-career opportunities are available to all employees. Some referenced in-house training packages, others provided examples of doing more to create a better gender balance at the upper end of the career ladder. Others have described greater use of flexible working patterns, such as encouraging part-time work. Financial services and retail provided the best and most innovative examples of how employees were being given more opportunities to learn and progress. But, overall, there was little evidence that the professions are getting to grips with the need to provide much more flexible progression routes.

Chapter 2 Progress in the professions – what has changed since 2009

29

Conclusion and recommendations
The professions have faced a challenging and turbulent time. The employment market remains at best fragile. In these circumstances there is a risk that improving fair access to professional careers becomes sidelined. Some of the evidence submitted for this report indicates that is happening. That is not to say that, in hearing from employers, professional bodies and regulators, there is not progress being made both by individual employers and by some professions. Some organisations have been working to improve fair access for a long time and social mobility has become an integral part of what they do. It is also pleasing to see some regulatory bodies, for the first time, setting clear objectives on improving social mobility and offering robust challenge where progress is not seen to be made. This report contains examples of exemplary good practice and highlights where genuine progress has been made. These are developments that are to be welcomed. Many individuals and organisations have put their shoulders to the wheel and are determined to continue doing so. Their efforts deserve praise. But the overall picture is far less positive. To recap:

There are significant areas for improvement. There is no one profession that can say it has cracked the fair access problem. Indeed, almost no profession has a clear plan for doing so. Unleashing Aspiration recommended that each profession should carry out a review of current practice on fair access, with a view to developing practical ideas for improvement. It urged each profession to report publicly on these by the end of 2010, with a clear set of recommendations and an action plan for implementation. As far as we are aware, not a single profession has done so. This is profoundly disappointing and suggests that, despite rhetoric to the contrary, all too often the reality is that the fair access agenda remains sidelined in most professions. That is unacceptable and must change. The professions should now consider what steps they need to take. They need to massively up their game. The Government should do more to pressurise the professions to act. Furthermore, the new Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission should report annually on what, if any, progress the professions are making.

• efforts to raise awareness and aspiration in

schools are too sporadic and too unspecific. They need to become universal and better co-ordinated a range of universities and regions. They need to widen their net lottery even as they become a key part of the formal professional labour market. They need to be treated as such foundation stones for making progress – are too haphazard. They need to be given much more serious attention diversified but the graduate grip on the labour market is still strong. There needs to be a far bigger drive to open up the professions to a wider variety of people with different qualifications.

• too many employers recruit from too narrow • work experience and internships are still a

• selection processes and data collection – the

• entry to the professions has begun to be

31

Chapter 3 Progress in the legal profession

This chapter sets out the progress that has been made to improve fair access to a professional career in the law. In particular:

• What the workforce looks like • Activities undertaken to improve social mobility • Remaining challenges, next steps and recommendations

As we saw in Chapter 2, despite considerable efforts on the part of some in the professions, access to a professional career remains closed off to many young people in Britain. The three chapters that follow take a more in-depth look at three professions which, while holding a special place in British society, have long had a reputation for social exclusivity – law, medicine and the media. This chapter deals with the legal profession. The legal sector was identified for two main reasons. First, there is a strong argument that, given its prominent, powerful and influential role in society, the legal profession has a special responsibility to ensure that its workforce is broadly representative of the people it serves. The less representative it is, the less legitimate it will be. Second, current data indicates that the composition of law firms, the Bar and the judiciary – despite considerable efforts – remains unrepresentative of broader British society, especially in the most senior positions.

What the legal workforce looks like
The judiciary Table 3.1, based on available data, shows that the majority of the most senior judges in the UK have been privately educated before attending either Oxford or Cambridge Universities:1

• 15 out of 17 Supreme Court judges and heads
of division attended independent schools and went on to study at Oxford or Cambridge

• of 38 justices of appeal, 26 attended

independent schools, eight attended grammar schools, two attended state comprehensive schools and two were schooled overseas; 28 then studied at Oxford or Cambridge independent schools; 82 then went to either Oxford or Cambridge, 22 to other Russell Group universities and just three to other universities public schools.2

• of 114 High Court judges, 83 attended

• of all the 169 judges, 33 went to the 11 major

32

Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

Table 3.1: Education background of senior judges School Independent school All Supreme Court and Heads of Division Court of Appeal High Court 74.7% 88.2% State school 18.7% 11.8% Unknown/ international 6.6% 0% Oxbridge 75.3% 88.2% University Russell Group 19.9% 11.8% Other 1.8% 0% Unknown/ international 3% 0%

68.4% 74.8%

26.3% 17.1%

5.3% 8.1%

73.7% 73.9%

23.7% 19.8%

0% 2.7%

2.6% 3.6%

The data in Figures 3.1 and 3.2,3 comparing today’s judicial make-up with that from the last decade, shows that this group has become only marginally more diverse in terms of school background. The private school dominance of the judiciary remains intact and the proportion of senior judges who went to Oxbridge is actually increasing. The judiciary remains solidly socially elitist.

The most recent diversity statistics4 for the judiciary paint a comparable picture. In 2011, 10 out of the 11 justices of the Supreme Court were white and male. For High Court judges, fewer than one in six (17 of 91 judges) are women and less than 5% are from black or minority ethnic (BME) backgrounds (four in total). Overall, of all judiciary roles, 22.3% are held by women and 5.1% are held by people from BME backgrounds.

Figure 3.1: School background of senior judges, 2002–12
100%

75%

50%

25%

0% Independent school 2002 2007 2012 State school Unknown/international

Chapter 3 Progress in the legal profession

33

Figure 3.2: University background of senior judges, 2002–12
100%

75%

50%

25%

0% Oxbridge 2002 2007 2012 Russell Group Other Unknown/international

Figure 3.3: Judicial diversity statistics by gender and profession, 2011
Deputy district judges (magistrates’ courts) District judges (magistrates’ courts) Deputy district judges (county courts) District judges (county courts) Recorders Circuit judges Deputy masters, costs judges and district judges Masters, registrars, costs judges and district judges Deputy judge advocates Judge advocates High Court judges Lords Justices of Appeal Heads of Division Justices of the Supreme Court

0% % Female

20% % Male

40%

60%

80%

100%

34

Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

The Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC), the body responsible for appointing judges, has developed a diversity strategy5 to encourage a wider range of applicants. It carries out targeted outreach, through seminars and events, for anyone interested in finding out more about judicial opportunities and the selection process. It has highlighted a number of barriers to entry to the judiciary that restrict efforts to improve diversity, such as the lack of availability of part-time working and the limited pool of candidates in the broader legal profession. The Bar A 2011 survey of the Bar6 found that barristers are highly educated and continue to follow traditional academic routes. Some 43% went to a fee-paying secondary school, although more female and BME barristers went to state schools. Almost a third went to Oxbridge and only 14% went to a 1992 (former polytechnic) university.

The most recent Bar Barometer figures8 show that, for the practising profession in 2010:

• 15,387 barristers held practising certificates,
an increase of 0.7% from 2009

• 80.7% of barristers were self-employed • 65.2% were men and 34.8% were women • 10.1% were from an ethnic minority
background. The 2011 survey found that women represent an increasing number of practising barristers but there had been only a slow increase in the number of barristers from BME backgrounds. There are two areas of work in the Bar: the selfemployed and the employed Bar. Self-employed barristers work either in chambers or alone as a sole practitioner. An employed barrister is an employee of a company or firm and gives legal advice and advocacy services to the employer and/or clients of the employer. Self-employment can be more insecure, with varying income and few benefits (such as maternity leave), but has the potential for more prestigious and better-paid

Figure 3.4: Type of university attended by barristers7
6% 1% 3% Oxbridge Russell Group 1994 group 1992 universities Other pre-1992 universities Second wave new universities Other 13%

30% 13%

34%

Chapter 3 Progress in the legal profession

35

cases. The employed Bar, conversely, provides more stability but fewer opportunities for prestige and high returns. The Bar survey9 found some big differences in profile between self-employed and employed barristers. Almost half of the barristers in the employed Bar are female, compared with a third in the self-employed Bar; just under a third of the employed Bar went to a fee-paying school

compared with almost half of the self-employed Bar; and 16% went to Oxbridge compared with 34% in the self-employed Bar. Furthermore, twice as many barristers in the self-employed Bar are QCs compared with barristers in the employed Bar. The largest practice area in the self-employed Bar is criminal practice, followed by civil law and family law, as set out in Figure 3.5.

Figure 3.5: Self-employed Bar: conflated main areas of practice10
35% 30% 25% 20% 15% 10% 5% 0%
l vil ily lig Pro en fe ce ssio /in n jur al y ne g m er ch cial an an ce d ry Int er na tio na l/E U m ina Fa Cr im Ci

Co

m

The most lucrative, prestigious and secure areas of the self-employed Bar have seen the least progression in terms of diversity and social mobility. Some of the most profitable practices are commercial and chancery, civil and international law.11 On the other hand, criminal law and family law – two of the least well paid and least secure practices, due to being publicly funded and vulnerable to cuts – contain more women and fewer people from a fee-paying school or Oxbridge background:12

• BME barristers in the self-employed Bar are

most likely to work in civil and family law (14% and 10% respectively) criminal practice in the self-employed Bar say that their gross billed income has increased; similarly, just 35% of barristers working in family practice say their income has increased in the last two years.

• fewer than one in four barristers working in

• twice as many women work in family law as in

any other area of practice in the self-employed Bar (64%)

These figures tell us that the self-employed Bar is less diverse than the employed Bar but, within the self-employed group, the more diverse sectors are those that are less well paid. The senior branches of the legal profession continue to be

36

Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

characterised by a social exclusivity that is at odds with the growing diversity of the society it serves. Progress is limited and much more needs to be done. Law firms Data on the socio-economic make-up of the bulk of the legal profession – those practising as solicitors – is not available. What we do know from the most recent figures from 201013 is that there were 150,128 registered solicitors, which was a 3.3% increase on the previous year. At the same date, 117,862 solicitors were actually practising. In 2009–10, excluding those whose ethnicity was unknown, solicitors from BME groups accounted for 11.9% of all registered solicitors, 11.1% of all solicitors with practising certificates, and 10.3% of all solicitors in private practice. Women now account for 45.8% of registered solicitors. Since 2000, the total number of solicitors holding practising certificates has grown by 42.4% while the number of women holding practising certificates has grown almost twice as fast, having increased by 79.7%. We do not yet know whether this trend will continue in the future. Worryingly, the number of registered training contracts (the two-year training stage before qualifying as a solicitor) has recently decreased, a likely result of the economic downturn.14

Improving young people’s aspirations Analysis of the responses to the call for evidence found that many of the legal sector respondents were focused on aspiration-raising programmes as their primary tool for improving social mobility and access to professional careers. It is clear that genuine steps have been taken since 2009 to improve awareness and understanding of the legal profession, as well as working with young people from more disadvantaged backgrounds to improve both cognitive and non-cognitive skills. Submissions provided examples of aspirationraising that covered:

• mentoring law students from lower socio­
economic backgrounds applications

• supporting A-level students with UCAS • annual careers days to encourage students to
apply to university

• work experience programmes, such as PRIME
and Legal Access Week Year 6 pupils

• building the literacy and numeracy skills of • hosting workshops, events and visits to offices.
Among the many examples of good practice we heard about is the work of the Inns of Court to challenge young people’s stereotypes about what it is like to work at the Bar.

What the legal profession is doing
In 2007, Lord Neuberger led a working party to review the selection and recruitment procedures used by the Bar. The resulting report15 recommended a set of proposals designed to increase significantly the number of able people from disadvantaged backgrounds at the Bar. Of course, it takes many years to join the most senior ranks of the legal profession so we will not see the benefits of the good work that is under way for perhaps more than a decade. But from the evidence we have seen, the Neuberger Report has galvanised the legal sector to show far greater determination to take the fair access agenda seriously.

Chapter 3 Progress in the legal profession

37

Case Study: Inner Temple Schools Project
Inner Temple, one of the four Inns of Court, launched the Inner Temple Schools Project in 2008. This programme comprises four strands of work:

• an annual seminar in association with the
National Education Trust for Year 12 and Year13 Greater London state school students, with more than 200 schools invited to send three pupils each Law students

First, the Solicitors Regulation Authority, with the Bar Standards Board and the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEx) Professional Standards, have commissioned a fundamental review of legal education and training which is due to report in December 2012. This review will anticipate the future demands on legal services. A key output will be a proposed framework suggesting alternative routes to qualification, possible routes for cross- and dual-qualification and mobility between the professions. We welcome this review and look forward with interest to seeing its recommendations later this year. Second, the Bar Standards Board is developing a new Code of Conduct on mandatory training in fair recruitment and selection processes, and the Bar Council is finalising a recruitment and selection toolkit. The new rules will require chambers to review their recruitment and selection procedures and the attitudes that underpin them, and the recruitment toolkit will support and assist chambers in doing this through training individuals in fair recruitment and selection procedures. Specifically relevant to social mobility issues, the toolkit contains guidance on how to recognise and avoid bias in recruitment, and how to approach applicants’ qualifications and existing experience in defining effective selection criteria, as well as guidance on widening the applicant pool. Third, new equality and diversity rules are scheduled to come into force in September 2012, and will be incorporated into the Bar’s Code of Conduct. They include new requirements for individuals responsible for the selection of assessed mini-pupillages, pupils, barristers, clerks and staff to undergo appropriate training in fair recruitment and selection processes. These are all welcome steps and we look forward to seeing them widely adopted across the legal profession. The Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission should assess whether this happens. Collecting socio-economic data In a significant development, the Legal Services Board will be introducing systematic socio­ economic data collection from the end of 2012. This is a decisive act of leadership which we applaud. We urge other sectors to follow suit.

• three days of activities for Pathways to • a biennial seminar for careers advisers,
where they receive information on scholarships and careers in law

• an annual launch of the Social Mobility

Foundation’s Bar Mock Placement Week at one of the Inns of Court.

The objective of this project is to challenge stereotypes about professional careers, provide guidance on progression to higher education and beyond, teach more about law and the legal system and promote social mobility. Over 1,000 school pupils and carers advisers have participated to date. The legal sector is to be applauded for the efforts it is making. We would like other leading profitmaking sectors, such as accountancy and banking, to take note of the way in which the sector is working together and to follow suit. Making recruitment processes more transparent In its response to our call for evidence, the Legal Services Board said “promoting greater flexibility in qualification and entry routes will provide more options for those from less advantaged backgrounds, including reducing the financial burdens associated with initial training”. There are several important pieces of work under way across the sector, which we hope will help ensure that recruitment processes both into law firms and the Bar become more fair and transparent.

38

Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

Case Study: Legal Services Board socio-economic data collection
The Legal Services Board has made the collection and publication of diversity data – including data on socio-economic background – a key priority for legal firms and chambers. It has produced guidance for approved regulators to ensure that they:

Case Study: Northumbria University
Northumbria University offers an M Law exempting degree that is leading the way in innovative professional education. It offers a qualifying law degree, a master’s-level qualification and exemption from the Legal Practice Course (LPC) or Bar Professional Training Course over an integrated fouryear period. This enables students to develop as fully rounded professionals, able to understand and practise the law on behalf of clients but also understanding the impact of the law on society. At the centre of the exempting degree is the Student Law Office (SLO) programme.  Over two years, students are prepared for acting for real clients. In the fourth year, students spend approximately 40% of the course acting for real clients under the supervision of qualified lawyers. The SLO has won numerous national awards over the years, including the National Training Award in 2010. The degree is validated as an exempting degree, not an honours degree with a bolton LPC. This is reflected in its structure and delivery, which differs substantially from free-standing LPC programmes. Nevertheless, the outcomes and standards of the LPC are achieved over the four years of the degree programme. The university has successfully run and increased the size of its exempting programme over the last 20 years, and it now attracts over 300 students, a significant number of whom come from non-traditional backgrounds. The vast majority of students graduate from the programme after four years with an exemption from the LPC and graduates regularly score highly in graduate employment statistics. 

• gather a more comprehensive evidence
base about the diversity characteristics of the legal workforce, including socio­ economic background

• ensure the transparency of data,

including requiring individual regulated entities to publish summary data on the diversity of their whole workforce the diversity make-up of each branch of the profession where appropriate, so that it can be used to track progress in relation to retention and progression existing diversity initiatives.

• collate data to give an aggregate view of • ensure the data identifies seniority

• evaluate the effectiveness and impact of
While diversity and socio-economic data should not be conflated, we have been encouraged to see that the Black Solicitors Network collects diversity data on an annual basis and that their findings are published in the form of a set of league tables.16 As it is not mandatory for law firms and Chambers to submit a return, we would encourage all members of the profession to respond. Flexible entry routes The main route into law is via university. While most undergraduate degree courses are predominantly theoretical in content, Northumbria University is running an innovative, practice-based undergraduate law degree. This course provides its graduates with a proven track record in practice that more traditional law degrees do not provide. It is something we would like to see emulated by many other law schools.

Chapter 3 Progress in the legal profession

39

Since 2009 there has also been some progress on developing alternative (non-degree) routes into the legal profession. These developments will be particularly important if there is a decline in the number of solicitors carrying out nonreserved work17 and paralegals start to take up this work instead. First, the CILEx route into law is extremely flexible, with multiple entry levels via GCSEs, A-levels, graduate-entry level and LPC-entry level. Its demographics demonstrate clearly the social inclusivity of this approach:

Improving recruitment practices The call for evidence also heard about several improvements to recruitment practices in the legal sector. These included:

• increased use of verbal reasoning tests instead
of just looking at GCSE and A-level results

• summer placement schemes • consideration of flexible entry requirements • widening undergraduate marketing to a broader
range of universities.

• parents of 81.5% of legal executives did not go
to university

• 75% of members are women • 13% of members are from BME backgrounds, • only 2% of its members have a parent who is
a lawyer.

Case Study:
Addleshaw Goddard LLP

Addleshaw Goddard LLP runs a Legal Access Scheme. This identifies law students from less privileged backgrounds who do not meet the company’s usual A-level selection critieria and fast tracks them onto the summer placement scheme. The selection process comprises a competency-based application form, an online verbal reasoning test and an interview with a careers consultant. Candidates that impress on the summer placement scheme are invited to an assessment centre and, if successful, are offered a training contract During the selection process, a heavy weighting is placed on any obstacles that candidates have had to overcome during schooling, including their socio-economic background. Since 2007, 13 participants have gone on to secure training contracts with the firm. These are welcome developments. We are also pleased that the Bar Standards Board’s new equality and diversity rules will cover new parental leave requirements aimed at improving the retention of women at the Bar. There is, however, a long way to go. Despite the plethora of initiatives aimed at bringing about a more diverse intake of employees, it is not clear what impact they have had on retention and

compared with 7.9% for the UK population as a whole

Take-up of CILEx fellows, however, remains disappointingly low. The UK’s top 100 law firms employ a total of 40,555 lawyers,18 668 (1.3%) of whom are CILEx fellows. For individual firms, the proportions range from 0% to 32%. For example, 32% of Minster Law’s lawyers have come up through the CILEx route, while the top three firms – Clifford Chance LLP, Linklaters LLP and Freshfields LLP – employ one fellow between them.19 Some leading law firms have made clear to us their intention of working with CILEx. This will necessitate some change in perceptions. Over half of practising CILEx fellows said that they had experienced barriers to progression in their law degree; educational background being the biggest one. These barriers have come from employers, work colleagues and professional law bodies.20 Second, Skills for Justice is developing an Advanced Apprenticeship for the Legal Sector framework. This will provide a package of training and qualifications for those working in a legal environment who are involved in the provision and practice of legal services and legal advice but who are not lawyers.

40

Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

progression. The Legal Services Board, in its call for evidence submission, raised the point that available data shows that only 25.4% of partners are women and only 7.1% are from ethnic minority backgrounds.21 The anticipated ‘trickle up’ effect from seeing more women and minority ethnic lawyers entering the profession does not seem to have materialised. The same patterns are also seen in the Bar. Equally worryingly, there seem to be only modest changes in the social pattern of those applying to study law at university. Law remains a very popular degree course and access to it is highly competitive. In 2002/03, of those applicants who succeeded in getting a place on a law degree, 50% were from the three highest socio-economic backgrounds, with 18% from the five lowest (32% were unknown or undeclared). The latest data for 2010/11 shows that 41% of law undergraduates were from the highest groups (a fall of 9%) and 21% from the lowest groups (a rise of 3%) but 38% were unknown or undeclared.22 Of course this is progress in the right direction but the pace of change remains frustratingly slow.

graduate education; training contract or pupillage; and in-career progression. The challenge for the legal profession and the legal regulators is to break down these barriers and promote a legal workforce that is genuinely open to the widest pool of talent. We have identified four specific areas for the sector to consider further. First, purpose of programmes. While organisations have provided us with a wealth of examples of best practice in outreach and raising aspiration, the purpose of the schemes has not always been made clear; in addition, so few schemes are fully evaluated that it is impossible to pinpoint the outcome. Of course, we welcome any activity that helps to raise aspiration and we also recognise the long tail of this activity; even work done with Years 12 and 13 pupils with the purpose of encouraging them to join the legal profession after graduation will not come to fruition for several years. Success in changing the make-up of the legal profession is, however, dependent on clarity. It is unclear at present what the motivating factors are for the type of outreach work that the legal sector undertakes. This plethora of initiatives has to be much more focused if it is to stand any chance of broadening the social intake and make-up of the legal profession. Second, sustainability and evaluation of programmes. Without developing sustainable and evaluated programmes, it is impossible for organisations to say with any degree of accuracy whether or not the schemes are effective in changing young people’s lives. We have been told by those who have expertise in delivering programmes for young people that initiatives must be more than a one-day burst of activity. Contact and support need to be more prolonged. Third, putting social mobility at the heart of the sector and organisations. Individual employers should consider how to embed social mobility and good practice in the fabric of their organisation. Too often the agenda is driven by a small number of individuals who are genuinely committed to effecting change. But for this to happen across the whole organisation, and for it to have permanency, it cannot just be a senior partner leading the

Conclusion
It is clear that the legal sector is starting to make real efforts to address fair access and social mobility. In some cases, the legal sector is at the forefront of driving activity aimed at changing access to professional jobs, whether this is through co-ordinated outreach programmes or by introducing socio-economic data collection. We commend these efforts and would like to see other professions following suit. There is, however, a lot more that needs to be done. The further up the profession you go, the more socially exclusive it becomes. Even more worryingly, entry to the law – and therefore the lawyers of the future – is still too socially exclusive. The Legal Services Board has completed a review23 of the relevant academic literature, which shows that this outcome does not occur mainly as a result of overt discrimination but rather that barriers to entry and progress occur over the lifetime at every stage of an aspiring lawyer’s career: statutory education; university; work experience; post­

Chapter 3 Progress in the legal profession

41

charge. Human resources and recruitment teams and diversity managers all have a part to play in thinking strategically about where applications are coming from and understanding the importance of the organisation having people from the widest range of backgrounds. Fourth, selection of the workforce from the widest possible pool. We have heard first hand from some law firms that their clients expect the ‘best’ and that this requires them to recruit from a handful of universities. We do not accept this as an argument. We have heard from universities that they cannot persuade law firms to visit or to undertake outreach. There are 115 universities in this country and law firms should recruit from as wide an academic pool as possible. Overall, law is on the right track but its progress is too slow. It needs to significantly accelerate.

43

Chapter 4 Progress in the medical profession

This chapter sets out the progress that has been made to improve fair access to a professional career in medicine. In particular:

• What the workforce looks like • Activities undertaken to improve social mobility • Remaining challenges, next steps and recommendations

We wanted to take a closer look at medicine for the following reasons. First, like law, the medical sector workforce increasingly interfaces with a more diverse Britain. The British Medical Association made clear in 2009 that “doctors should be as representative as possible of the society they serve in order to provide the best possible care to the UK population”. Second, at the moment, this is still not the case. The profession is still dominated by those from the highest socio-economic backgrounds and little has changed over time. Like law, access to the profession is through a highly competitive process. Medicine is one of the most over-subscribed courses at university. Medical schools set a very high academic bar and are extremely selective about who is accepted. Undergraduates again are over-represented by those from higher socio-economic backgrounds.

39,506 were consultants. There were also 39,780 GPs.2 According to a 2009 report by the British Medical Association,3 the average UK medical school is now likely to contain a more diverse range of students than has been the case in the past, in relation to race and gender. In 2008, 56% of all entrants to medical school (UK domiciled students) were women and over a quarter (28%) of UK domiciled students offered a place at medical school were from ethnic minority backgrounds. There was, however, significant variation in the application and acceptance rates between ethnic groups. Students from Asian backgrounds made up over two-thirds (69%) of all accepted ethnic minority students. The General Medical Council, in its 2011 report on the state of medical education and practice,4 also found that the medical profession is “highly diverse and changing significantly”:

Current context
Latest figures for 20121 show that overall there were 1,192,506 staff in the English NHS workforce. Of these, there were 630,378 professionally qualified clinical staff, of whom

• the number of female doctors is set to overtake
male doctors. In 2001 there were almost twice as many male registered doctors as female. By contrast, by 2010, 58% of doctors were male and 42% female

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

• the Royal College of Physicians predicts that

women will become the majority of doctors in the NHS at some point between 2017 and 20225 Register described themselves as white, 18.7% described themselves as Asian or Asian British and 2.6% described themselves as black or black British.

• in 2010, just under half the doctors on the UK

80% came from professional and ‘intermediate’ backgrounds (socio-economic classes I, II and III).” Since the 1970s, the UK medical student body has become increasingly diverse when it comes to gender, ethnicity and age. That progress, however, has not been mirrored by a similar change in its socio-economic background. In 2008, medical schools were still dominated by those from the higher socio-economic groups. Since that 2009 report by the British Medical Association, it is not clear how much has changed. In the 2010/11 undergraduate intake, 57% of accepted medical school applicants came from the top three socio-economic classes, but only 7% from the bottom three socio-economic classes. This represents hardly any improvement from eight years earlier, when the proportions were 62% and 7% respectively.8

Socio-economic background of medical undergraduates and professionals This is a considerable change in the shape of the medical workforce. According to the British Medical Association:6 “In the mid-20th century most medical school students were male school­ leavers from white, middle-class backgrounds. In the early 1960s, for example, fewer than one in three medical students were female and almost

Figure 4.1: Breakdown by ethnicity – medical students7
60%

50%

40%

30%

20%

10%

0 White Asian or Asian British Black or black British Mixed race Not stated Other ethnic groups Unspecified

Chapter 4 Progress in the medical profession

45

Table 4.1: Higher Education Statistics Agency student record for medicine and dentistry, 2010/11 and 2002/03   Socio-economic classification Higher managerial and professional occupations Lower managerial and professional occupations Intermediate occupations Small employers and own account workers Lower supervisory and technical occupations Semi-routine occupations Routine occupations Never worked and long-term unemployed Not classified Unknown Academic year (% intake) 2010/11 31 19 7 3 2 6 1 1 23 7 2002/03 33 21 8 3 1 5 2 1 11 15

In 2002/03, 23% of medical and dental undergraduates were from private schools. By 2010/11 this pattern had barely changed, with 22% still coming from private schools. Access to medicine remains dominated by those from better-off, often privately educated, backgrounds.

by medical schools wishing to reach young people who may not have considered medicine as a career to individual Royal Colleges conducting awarenessraising programmes. Beyond that we did not detect any great intentional focus on the part of the medical profession to make progress on fair access a priority. Raising aspiration and outreach All medical schools run initiatives to widen access to their courses for students who would not traditionally have applied to study medicine. These are designed to support students from disadvantaged backgrounds, mature students, students from ethnic minority backgrounds and disabled students.

What the medical profession is doing
As part of the call for evidence we wrote to a broad cross-section of medical and health science sector employers, Royal Colleges and professional bodies, requesting updates on social mobilityrelated activity. The response rate was poor. What we were able to glean is that, as with many other sectors, outreach is the area in which most activity is focused. This ranged from the work carried out

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

Case Study: Brighton and Sussex Medical School
BrightMed is Brighton and Sussex Medical School’s widening participation scheme. Students are recruited in Year 8 and begin the programme in Year 9. Year 9 and Year 10 students each have six activity days during the academic year. Year 11 students have four days and Year 12 students have five days plus a week-long summer residential. Since 2006, 557 students have been recruited onto the programme and BrightMed is currently working with 227 students. BrightMed is delivered by a mix of faculty, clinicians and students, with teaching focusing on six themes, running throughout each year group: being a doctor and a medical student; applying to study medicine; ethics; clinical skills; the human body; and personal development. Teaching highlights include living anatomy, and dissection, along with student-designed sessions. To date all students who have applied to study medicine and have met academic criteria have had at least one interview. Of those, 80% have received offers. In addition, BrightMed Compact is an intensive three-day event aimed at Year 12 students who have not joined the main programme – it features key elements of BrightMed. And the BrightMed Road Show is delivered using the same teaching sessions as BrightMed Compact, but takes place over three days in several towns in the South East outside of Sussex. Its goal is to reach out to students who do not have immediate access to a medical school. Of the 14 students who took part in the 2010 BrightMed London Road Show, 13 received interviews for medicine and 12 had offers. Work experience All students wishing to read medicine at university must demonstrate that they have undertaken some form of relevant work experience as part of their application. Unfortunately there does not seem to be any research available on who gets

work experience opportunities in medicine. Until recently, at least, it appears that work experience was unstructured and ad hoc, which favoured young people with connections – including many sons and daughters of doctors. Some parts of the NHS have taken steps to formalise their work experience programmes. For example, City Hospitals Sunderland has a dedicated work experience team to manage the demand for placements which are restricted to students attending Sunderland local schools and colleges. They offer a clinical taster week for 14–16 year olds and work experience for 16–18 year olds. All placements have to be applied for and are subject to interviews to ensure a fair selection process. Anecdotally, however, it appears that access remains based on who applicants know rather than any other more objective criteria. At an evidence session on medicine organised to help in the preparation of this report, participants (who came from NHS Employers, the General Medical Council, Royal Colleges and trade unions) raised concerns that the informal nature of who gets work experience opportunities is a significant barrier to young people from non-professional backgrounds being able to pursue a career in medicine. We were told that there is no consistency in the approach to how work experience opportunities are managed. Each NHS trust seems to operate a different policy. Some hospitals use waiting lists for applicants seeking work experience opportunities but it can sometimes take a year for a registrant to work their way up the list, by which time it may be too late. Other NHS trusts ask that people live and go to a school in the area they serve and offer positions on a first come, first served basis. Many GPs do not, understandably, like taking work experience students as they are often worried about confidentiality issues.9 There is also often an issue with age. Some hospitals and GPs require students to be over 16 before they will take them on. This can be a problem for some school students in Year 11 who may still be 15 when they are offered work experience at school.10 Patients are often also uncomfortable with work experience students being present.

Chapter 4 Progress in the medical profession

47

Medical schools make explicit information available on their websites, setting out the requirement for applicants for medicine to have undertaken work experience. They seem to be aware of the implications of this for access. In some cases medical schools ask applicants how they secured their work experience and, if it was through family connections, this would be factored into the overall comparisons with other applicants. Despite this corrective action and some efforts on the part of local NHS employers to formalise work experience processes, medicine exemplifies the wider problem with informal work experience and internships across the professions. Work experience is a requirement to be able to study medicine. But getting access to it is unstructured and informal. It is wide open to gaming by those in the know and indirectly discriminates against those who are not. We could uncover little systematic effort on the part of the medical profession to address this palpable unfairness. That needs to change. Entrance to medical school Each medical school in the UK has its own, often very demanding, criteria for selection for entry. All UK medical schools accept applications that demonstrate a good level of prior academic attainment. In recent years medical schools have sought to identify ways of selecting candidates on a wider basis than pure academic attainment. They have done so largely in the belief that modern medicine requires a range of human and social skills as well as scientific and clinical ones. Indeed, this is captured in the General Medical Council’s standards for teaching, learning and assessment:11 “Today’s undergraduates – tomorrow’s doctors – will see huge changes in medical practice. There will be continuing developments in biomedical sciences and clinical practice, new health priorities, rising expectations among patients and the public, and changing societal attitudes. Basic knowledge and skills, while fundamentally important, will not be enough on their own.” Broadly, there seem to be three approaches that medical schools have used to secure students with a wider range of skills other than the purely academic.

First, applicants in 26 of 31 medical schools in the UK have to sit an entrance exam, the UK Clinical Aptitude Test (UKCAT). The test is intended to assist universities in selecting entrants by testing aptitude rather than knowledge. Theoretically it could help those applicants who are from lower socio-economic backgrounds who may perform less well at A-level. There is evidence to suggest, however, that young people from state schools or from more disadvantaged backgrounds may not perform as well as their more affluent counterparts in the test. The Sutton Trust found that “there is some evidence that these tests and interviews can place bright non-privileged pupils at a disadvantage because their schools do not have the capacity to prepare them for the tests and may be unfamiliar with the test format”.12 Second, some medical schools make use of contextual data in determining admissions.13 This involves taking the socio-economic background of the applicant and the school they attended into account when assessing their academic results and application for admission to medical school. Some medical schools use contextual data to identify high-potential students with lower than normal A-level results. The standard three As can be lowered to as little as BCC if applicants meet widening participation criteria. Third, a number of medical schools offer foundation years, including to students with mainly non-science A-levels. Foundation years provide the essential skills and knowledge required for particular programmes to those who do not have the required levels of prior attainment. The Norwich Medical School, for example, runs a foundation year, which admits students if they can demonstrate that they have academic potential but have been educationally disadvantaged. The programme requires a minimum of BBB at A-level, and students must achieve an overall pass rate of 70% for the first year to join the mainstream fiveyear cohort of medical students. Leeds University runs the Access to Leeds programme, covering a multitude of subjects including medicine. Some 68% of the Access to Leeds graduates in both 2010 and 2011 achieved a 2:1 classification or higher, which is very similar to the overall university rate.

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

Case Study: King’s College London – Extended Medical Degree Programme
King’s College London provides a six-year Extended Medical Degree Programme (EMDP). It allows students with academic potential, who may not have achieved the A-level grades required by conventional medical schools, to study medicine. Students studying at non-selective state schools or sixth form colleges in Greater London, Kent or Medway are eligible. A contextualised approach is used, including the UCAS statement and A-level and GCSE grades, all considered in the light of the applicant’s educational background. Overwhelmingly students continue to be recruited from schools whose A-level results are below the national average. The average offer to date is BBB. The demographic profile of students on the EMDP course differs from that of students on the conventional medical programme. Some 70% of EMDP students are the first in their family to attend university, and around 65% come from households whose total family income is less than £25,000 a year. Some 90% of EMDP students are from black or minority ethnic backgrounds, with 39% of black African or Caribbean heritage. To start with, the retention rate on the EMDP was around 85%, compared with a 97% retention rate for the students on the standard medical degree during the same period. Since 2008, the retention rate has risen to around 93%, and this trend towards significantly improved completion shows that EMDP students are increasingly successful in reaching the goal of qualifying as doctors.

These approaches are welcome steps. Despite the positive impact they have made on opening up medicine to a wider raft of students, they have not, to date, been as widely adopted as might have been expected. In-work progression The ways in which doctors work and train is undergoing significant changes in the UK. Following two years as a foundation doctor, the next step is specialty registrar, before becoming a consultant, GP or staff grade doctor. The total time in training is a minimum of eight years for consultants or five years for GPs. Among specialty registrars, there are now more white women than white men. Over time this could be expected to change the demographics of the workforce at senior levels. Figure 4.2 shows that while the consultant workforce has become more ethnically diverse today, it is still predominantly white and male.

Conclusion
Medicine has a long way to go when it comes to making access fairer, diversifying its workforce and raising social mobility. It lags behind some other professions both in the focus and the priority it accords to these issues. There is no sense of the sort of galvanised effort that the Neuberger Report induced in law.14 That is regrettable not least because when it comes to both gender and race, medicine has made impressive progress over recent years. Its success in recruiting more women and ethnic minority doctors indicates that with the right level of intentionality the medical profession can also throw open its doors to a far broader social intake than it does at present. The profession itself recognises that the skills that modern doctors require include far greater understanding of the social and economic backgrounds of the people they serve. That is a welcome recognition. It now needs to be matched by action. There are five areas to highlight as priorities. First, while we applaud the range of outreach and aspiration-raising activity under way to try to encourage a wider pool of students to apply to study medicine, there is little evaluation of what works and no agreed definition of what the measures of success should be. That must be put right and the profession as a whole should work

Chapter 4 Progress in the medical profession

49

Figure 4.2: NHS hospital and community health service consultants by gender and ethnicity
16,000

12,000

8,000

4,000

0 White British female 2007 2011 White British male Black or black British female Black or black British male Asian or Asian British female Asian or Asian British male

together to publish its intentions. It should also look to what lessons can be learned from initiatives like PRIME in the legal sector to better co-ordinate and focus outreach efforts. The Academy of Medical Royal Colleges has a key role to play in this regard. Second, access to work experience in a clinical setting needs to be formalised. The current ad hoc arrangements are patently unfair. There is strong ground for the NHS as a whole to adopt a common framework of principles governing access to work experience, which individual employers can then adopt to suit their own local situation. We look to the General Medical Council, the NHS Confederation and NHS Employers to take the lead here. Third, a broader range of work experience, other than that acquired in a hospital or surgery, could be taken into account by medical schools in assessing applicants. For example, medical schools could give equal weighting to those applicants who have undertaken work experience that helps equip them with the skills on which they are tested as part of the admissions process. We look to the Medical Schools Council to show leadership on this issue. Fourth, there needs to be far greater transparency and flexibility in medical school application

procedures. We recognise that there is great demand for undergraduate places to read medicine and that it is vital that excellence is maintained. Academic skills will remain paramount in determining admission but medical schools need to do much more to align their criteria for admission with the broader skill-set that today’s doctors need to have in order to practise successfully. That will mean doing more to take into account life experience and social skills alongside academic attainment. It will mean making the use of contextual data the norm, not the exception. And it will mean making foundation courses more widely available than they are at present. Fifth, data collection needs to be improved. At the moment there is no systematic collection of information on the social backgrounds of staff in the medical sector. More work needs to be done on this by both medical schools and individual NHS employers. We look to the General Medical Council to emulate the approach taken by the Legal Services Board and we look to NHS Employers, the NHS Confederation, the Medical Schools Council and the British Medical Association to champion the systematic collection and publication of this data. Overall, medicine has made far too little progress and shown far too little interest in the issue of fair access. It needs a step change in approach.

51

Chapter 5 Progress in journalism and the media professions

This chapter sets out the progress that has been made to improve fair access to a professional career in journalism and the media professions. In particular:

• What the workforce looks like • Activities undertaken to improve social mobility • Remaining challenges, next steps and recommendations
The current context
We identified broadcasting and journalism as a sector1 to take a closer look at for a number of reasons. First, attracting and developing a diverse workforce at every tier is regarded as essential to ensure that programmes and publications reflect their audiences. A diverse workforce also helps to guarantee creative thinking that connects with all elements of society. The BBC in its call for evidence submission sums this up clearly by saying: “We believe that creativity is born out of diversity of experience and thinking. Employing unique and talented people from a range of different backgrounds enables us to push creative boundaries… and make programmes that connect with all audiences.” Second, it is a sector that is going through a period of rapid and profound change. Traditional television business models are being challenged by audience fragmentation and a move of advertising to the internet. Local and regional newspapers are disappearing and newspaper journalism is being challenged by online content. Third, journalism has become radically professionalised over recent decades and has become an increasingly exclusive profession. As Unleashing Aspiration revealed, journalists and broadcasters born in 1958 typically grew up in families with an income of around 5.5% above that of the average family. For those born in 1970, that proportion had risen to 42.4%.2 Indeed, journalism has had a greater shift towards social exclusivity than any other profession. The move away from print journalism towards digital channels may in time help to generate a greater social diversity in the profession, not least through user-generated content. In the meantime, however, access to mainstream journalism needs to be opened up as well. This view was strongly reinforced in our call for evidence. Channel 4 commented that: “New entrants are predominantly graduates – with fewer opportunities for those who do not have a degree. As a result of this culture, the media industry as a whole remains under-representative of some social groups, such as ethnic minorities, disabled people and those from disadvantaged backgrounds.”

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

Due to a lack of data, we are not able to provide a full picture of the demographic background of the workforce as a whole and there is no regulatory body that sets standards or collects data for the sector. Research by Skillset,3 however, found that:

households.8 A more recent study,9 by The Sutton Trust in 2006, found that:

• of the top journalists in 2006, 54% were

• 41% of employees in the television industry are

independently educated, an increase from 49% in 1986 a third of leading journalists in both 1986 and 2006.

female but the overall representation of women has declined year on year from 49% in 2004 up 9% of the television industry’s workforce.

• University of Oxford accounted for just under
The Sutton Trust is currently updating its work on leading news journalists. Early indications suggest that there has been little change in the educational backgrounds of today’s top editors. Nor is there much evidence to suggest that this trend will abate in future. Higher Education Statistics Agency data10 from 2010/11 on those who are studying journalism at degree level indicates that 49% of today’s students came from the top three socio-economic classes.

• people from ethnic minority backgrounds make
A number of newspapers and broadcasting organisations are now collecting diversity data and have appointed diversity managers. Some, such as the BBC, are also making this information public. This is welcome. It is clear from the available data, however, that the media industry has a long way to go if it is aiming to be more representative of the society it serves. For example, at the BBC, as at February 2011, female representation at senior management level stood at 35.7%.4 This figure seems to be in line with the industry, with female representation at senior management level standing at 36% and at board level at 30% in 2009.5 For newspaper journalism, a 2011 survey found that 74% of print journalists on national newspapers were men, with women also less likely to be in senior positions.6 We have heard from individual media organisations about efforts to improve the diversity of their workforce. We are concerned that when media organisations talk about social mobility, however, they often limit this definition to race and gender and are not taking the same steps to increase the number of employees from lower socio-economic backgrounds. The largest ever independent study of those entering the profession, by the Journalism Training Forum in 2002, found that journalism was increasingly becoming middle and upper-middle class in its composition, with only 3% of new entrants to the profession coming from families headed by someone in a semi-skilled or unskilled job,7 despite the 2001 Census showing that these types of households constitute 16.3% of all UK

What the media profession is doing
Raising aspiration We have heard from employers about the work they are doing that supports young people aspiring to join the sector. There is much good work under way. The BBC and ITV, for example, both run a number of programmes to encourage young people from diverse backgrounds to consider careers within the media sector.

Case Study: BBC
The Mentor Project, run in BBC North, aims to reflect the views and creative ideas of people from local communities who may have felt excluded from the BBC. It has provided past participants with the opportunity to test out their own ideas, learn about the BBC and develop new opportunities working with the BBC or other broadcasters; helped them move on to further or higher education; or in some cases simply provided a useful insight into the industry and a range of core skills that participants choose to use elsewhere.

Chapter 5 Progress in journalism and the media professions

53

Case Study: ITV
ITV offers a ten-day programme aimed at 14–17 year olds, which gives young people the opportunity to gain meaningful work experience. The participants are recruited through outreach with communities and charities as well as via schools to encourage diverse participation. The programme offers interactive workshops, hands-on experience and interaction with staff to 100 young people each year. Those who display an interest in a career in media can return at a later date for a specific placement and apply for ITV’s apprenticeship scheme. Work experience and internships In our call for evidence, respondents highlighted the competitive nature of gaining employment within the media industry, with jobs often dependent on establishing personal relationships with those already in the industry. A number of organisations run work experience programmes that in part target young people from disadvantaged backgrounds. Guardian Media and News offers a limited number of advertised short work experience opportunities throughout the year to people aged 18 or over who can demonstrate a genuine passion for journalism. Placements are unpaid and range in duration from a few days to a maximum of a fortnight. As part of its work for the 2012 Olympics, the BBC has work experience and apprenticeship schemes targeted towards individuals from lower socio­ economic groups in the six London boroughs surrounding the Olympic Park. The organisation is also reviewing its mainstream work experience scheme, including evaluating the impact on social mobility. All too often, unpaid internships are a key entry route into journalism and the media industry more generally. What seems to distinguish journalism from other professions, however, is that interns are substitutes for what in other sectors would be regarded as functions carried out by mainstream paid employees. A 2008 survey by the National Union of Journalists11 found that:

• more than 50% of respondents completed work
experience placements after achieving their qualification, with the majority receiving little or no payment for their work 78% received no payment for their work

• of those who had material published or broadcast, • one in four people claimed to have completed
a placement at an organisation that would not be able to function normally without people on work experience.

This is clearly not work experience in the sense that most people would understand: of practical learning about a professional career for a short spell in a structured placement. The practice in much of the media industry is more akin to treating interns as free labour. The problem with that is self-evident. It is possible only for those who can afford to work for free. It means that others – perhaps with equal or better claims on a career in journalism – are excluded from consideration. The stories we heard are legion of access to an internship being made through connection rather than ability. That is unacceptable and must change. All internships should be fair, high quality and comply with all current employment legislation provisions. If internships are anything other than short work experience placements, they should also comply with the legal requirements of the National Minimum Wage. This profession is a clear example of one in which internships clearly transgress these basic fair rules. Recruitment practices Media organisations run a range of trainee schemes to help provide access to careers within broadcasting. We also heard of examples that help ensure that there are non-graduate entry routes open to all in order to attract the best young candidates regardless of background. The BBC trainee schemes encourage applications from people from all social backgrounds and are widely advertised on the recruitment pages of the BBC’s website. They do not ask for graduates, and assessment centres are used to recruit. The purpose is to help increase access to talented people from the widest possible range of backgrounds.

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

We have also been encouraged to see that a number of respondents, such as Channel 4, ITV, the BBC and Sky, offer modern apprenticeships, giving individuals paid, structured training.

Conclusion
A generation ago it was perfectly possible for a senior national journalist to have worked their way up from a local paper and to have entered the profession without a university degree. Today, there are fewer such people. Journalism has become almost entirely a degree-only profession. And securing an internship has become a hurdle that has to be cleared for most who aspire to a career in the media industry. These changes have contributed to making journalism one of the most socially exclusive of professions. Many in the industry are concerned about that trend and are working hard to reverse it. Without a single representative or regulatory body, responsibility for bringing about change in the media sector sits with organisations’ boards, senior staff, editors and human resources teams. Our sense is that current efforts are fragmented and lacking in any real vigour. There are two specific areas that the profession needs to confront as a matter of urgency. First, work experience and internships. Both are crucial steps on the ladder to employment. For that reason the media industry as a whole must do far more to make internships transparent and open to all. They should be advertised. There should be proper objective recruitment processes in place. And, if they are doing anything other than short work experience placements, interns should be appropriately paid. Second, socio-economic data. As in other sectors, lack of collection and publication of both diversity and socio-economic data is an impediment to making progress on opening up access to a broader cross-section of society. The leading broadcasters in particular could and should take a lead here. Journalism, with some honourable exceptions, does not seem to take the issue of fair access seriously. Where it has focused on fair access, it has prioritised race and gender but not socio­ economic diversity. That needs to change.

Case Study: Creative Diversity Network
The Creative Diversity Network (CDN) is a pan-industry network that brings together partners to advance equality and promote diversity through a range of initiatives which aim to open up the industry to those who have traditionally experienced barriers or exclusion. It is currently being chaired by the BBC Director General. The CDN works closely with the independent media sector to help them to consider ways to promote broad diversity on and off the screen, for example by signing up to the CDN diversity pledge. This commits, among other things, to recruiting fairly and from as wide a base as possible. The CDN also publishes good practice toolkits that advise on specific ways to increase access, including by removing barriers such as unpaid internships. Collecting socio-economic data The lack of data on the workforce remains a significant issue for the media sector. It is clearly a long way behind many other sectors in putting into place systems and teams to start addressing issues around social mobility. We have heard primarily about organisations focusing on gender and ethnicity rather than on monitoring and improving the socio-economic diversity of the workforce. Career progression Responses to the call for evidence provided us with little information on efforts to improve in-work progression across the media industry. Some broadcasters, however, did highlight the importance of nurturing talent throughout people’s careers. Examples of good practice include mentoring programmes and networking events.

57

Chapter 6 Progress in Westminster and Whitehall

This chapter sets out:

• The current picture in Parliament • What the civil service is doing to improve fair access to career opportunities • What more needs to be done
Government has a key role in leading efforts to improve social mobility in our country. Many of the recommendations in Unleashing Aspiration were directed at the Government in its role as a policymaker, and Chapter 7 considers what progress it has made in that regard. In this chapter, however, we look at what the Government – and Parliament – is doing in its role as an employer in regard to the fair access agenda. In part the credibility of the Government in its policy-making role depends on its credibility as an employer on these issues. The question we ask here is whether the Government, the civil service and Parliament have got their own houses in order. Among the three main parties, privately educated MPs comprised 51% of the total in 1983. By 1997, that number had fallen to 30%. Since then, however, it has increased again – to 32% in 2005. After the 2010 general election, 35% of current MPs were privately educated (compared with 7% of the total population). Less than half (43%) of today’s MPs were educated in comprehensive state schools, with the remainder having attended state grammar schools (22%). Just 13 private schools provided 10% of all MPs.2 Over the last four decades the proportion of MPs who come from a manual background has fallen markedly. So too have the number of MPs coming from a professional or business background. The biggest rise has been in the group of MPs who have come through from a wholly political background. Figure 6.1 outlines the trend.

The House of Commons
The social make-up of parliamentarians is skewed and Parliament is unrepresentative of the people it serves. Parliament is dominated by middle-aged white men. Of the 2010 Parliament, more than 400 MPs in the House of Commons (62%) are white men aged over 40.1

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

Figure 6.1: MP occupations between 1970 and 2010
50%

40%

30%

20%

10%

0% 1970 Professional Media 1983 Business Political 1987 Manual White collar 1992 Legal 1997 Teacher 2001 2005 2010

Note: Figures from the 2010 intake include an element of double-counting as they include MPs with more than one vocation

The Lords
There is no up-to-date data on the social composition of the House of Lords. In 2005, however, members of the Lords were almost twice as likely as their Commons counterparts to have been to independent school (62% compared with 32%). Of those, 43% attended 12 institutions. Eton alone had educated 88 Lords, the majority of whom were hereditary peers. Oxford and Cambridge universities had educated 42% of the total membership of the House of Lords.3

one or two days a week in Parliament. Some Parliamentary internship schemes are paid; others are reimbursed for expenses, which typically extend to travel and a lunch allowance. The Speaker’s Conference (on Parliamentary Representation) Final Report from 20104 found that there are four substantial difficulties for people interested in accessing Parliamentary internships to overcome:

• the number of opportunities available at any

Internships
Some MPs will have started out as Parliamentary researchers or served as special advisers to government ministers. The route to a Parliamentary research post often involves serving as an intern. Many MPs, from all political parties, hire interns to work in their Parliamentary offices. The specifics of these placements vary substantially from office to office and can be long-term placements, during which the intern will spend typical working hours in the office, or more flexible ones, during which an intern may spend

time is limited, and the unstructured and sporadic nature of such internships can make it difficult for applicants to plan their applications effectively are therefore restricted to those with the necessary contacts, who receive ‘word-of­ mouth’ information about positions

• internships may not be widely advertised, and

• access may be restricted to a particular group,

for example university students, and therefore some enthusiastic applicants may feel that they do not have a realistic chance of being awarded such a position

Chapter 6 Progress in Westminster and Whitehall

59

• internships are frequently unpaid, and the

significant costs associated with living in London can mean that those from disadvantaged backgrounds or those from outside London are unable to afford to work as an intern in Parliament.

making sure that their MPs provide internships that are exemplary in their quality, transparency and fairness.

The civil service
The most recent official figures show that in March 2011 there were 498,433 civil servants in the UK,5 a reduction of 52,000 from when the Government came into office. The number of civil servants has fallen from a peak of 583,000 in 2004, but a job in the civil service remains highly attractive and competition for posts is fierce. There are two main entry routes into the civil service. First, there is the Civil Service Fast Stream. This is the talent management programme for graduates who have the potential to become the future leaders of the civil service. There are approximately 500 vacancies each year through this entry route.6 The selection process involves a series of competency-based tests, including a full-day assessment centre. Second, many civil service jobs are open to all applicants through a fair and open recruitment process. These posts are advertised on a single website. The particular application process will vary depending on the job, but will typically involve a competency-based written application and interview. A civil service recruitment freeze has been in place since May 2010, and will continue until at least March 2013. The freeze covers all external recruitment into the civil service, although there are some exemptions – for example for business-critical posts, the Fast Stream and apprenticeships. Since the recruitment freeze was introduced, external recruitment has reduced by around 70%. The Senior Civil Service Traditionally, the senior echelons of the civil service were dominated by those from a private school background. Figure 6.27 shows that in the latter part of the 19th century, the majority of top civil servants were educated at one of 11 major public schools.8 Nowadays, members of the Senior Civil Service – roughly the top 1% of jobs – come from a more diverse range of backgrounds.

There has been growing unease, including within Parliament, about these issues. The Speaker of the House of Commons has taken a lead in beginning to address them. The scheme he has endorsed is an exemplar and deserves special praise.

Case Study: The Speaker’s Parliamentary Placements Scheme
The Speaker’s Parliamentary Placements Scheme has been designed by a group of MPs representing each of the three main political parties to open up Parliament to those who are unable to afford to work in London unpaid for several months. Co-ordinated by the Social Mobility Foundation, the scheme involves participants spending eight months in Parliament, being paid according to the Parliamentary pay scale and being given housing support where required. The first cohort of ten people are currently working in the offices of MPs from Monday to Thursday and are working for the House of Commons and undertaking training with sponsoring organisations on Fridays. The scheme does not have any specific education or experience requirements as it is designed to help those who are passionate about politics to get a fair chance of working for an MP. The current cohort range, aged from their 20s to their 50s, includes people who have left school at 16 or have been apprentices, university graduates and those who have never had a job or who previously worked in other sectors. There is clearly a long way to go before Parliament becomes an exemplar when it comes to making internships properly fair and open. But this initiative is a good start. All the political parties need now to put their shoulders to the wheel in

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Figure 6.2: School background of top civil servants, 1880–1970
80% 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% 1880–99 State school 1900–19 11 major public schools 1920–39 1940–59 1960–70

Figure 6.3: School background of top 200 Senior Civil Servants, 2010/11
40% 35% 30% 25% 20% 15% 10% 5% 0% Independent school State grammar school State comprehensive or secondary modern Other state assisted or funded school Not educated in the UK

In 2009, Unleashing Aspiration found that 45% of Senior Civil Servants had been privately educated. It specifically recommended that “the Government should collect and publish data on the socio-economic background of entrants to the Senior Civil Service, drawing on the lessons that have been learned from collecting and publishing data on gender, race and disability”. Since then, a measurement of socio-economic status has been introduced and, from March 2010, the

Government also started to collect information on the socio-economic background of new entrants to the Fast Stream. For entrants to the Senior Civil Service in 2010/11:9

• 27% had attended an independent school • 37% had attended a state grammar school • 18% had attended a state comprehensive or
secondary modern

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• 12% had attended either a state assisted or
funded school

• 6% were not educated in the UK.
These patterns are also reflected in data on those seeking to serve at senior levels in our country’s Armed Forces.10 Although privately educated individuals are still over-represented at Sandhurst (all British Army officers must attend the Commissioning Course as Officer Cadets at Sandhurst), the proportion of Sandhurst graduates who attended private schools has slightly declined in recent years from 44% in 2005/06 to 42.8% in 2011/12. In addition, 60% of the intake on the Advanced Command and Staff Course (selected into the course by their superiors as they are considered to be the 10% of Majors/Lt Colonels who have the best chance of progressing to the top) were educated in state schools. It is also the case that around 28% of officers recruited to the Armed Forces come from other ranks. The Armed Forces as a whole offer a wide range of employment opportunities, which enables them to recruit, train and educate people with differing educational attainment levels, so long as they meet the entry-level standards. Fast Stream The Fast Stream (the civil service’s graduate recruitment programme) is a key gateway into the Senior Civil Service. Following recommendations in Unleashing Aspiration, socio-economic data is now collected for applicants to the Fast Stream. The results of the 2011 recruitment report11 show that 70.3% of those making an application to join the Fast Stream grew up in a household with a parent employed in a higher managerial, administrative or professional occupation. In 2011 applications came from graduates of more than 150 degree-awarding institutions and from a wide range of academic backgrounds. Successful candidates came from more than 60 different institutions. The proportion of successful candidates who attended Oxford or Cambridge has fallen from 34.5% in 1998 to 26.0% in 2011.

In order to ensure that Fast Stream recruits are drawn from as wide a pool as possible, there are a number of initiatives under way, including:

• running a coaching programme to help

individuals from black and minority ethnic (BME) and/or lower socio-economic backgrounds make a successful application training to all assessors, including sessions on unconscious bias those with more diverse student populations through networking events diverse applicant groups.

• ensuring a fair process by providing diversity • targeting university campus visits to include

• building partnerships with diverse communities • providing on-campus selection skills sessions to
These are welcome developments and should be monitored closely as to their effectiveness in broadening the socio-economic diversity of the Fast Stream. Internships There are an estimated 300 work experience and internship placements made available through centrally co-ordinated schemes in Whitehall departments every year. The Government made a commitment in its Coalition Agreement to provide internships in every Whitehall department for under-represented groups. Three complementary schemes are taking forward this commitment:

• at undergraduate/graduate level: The Summer

Diversity Internship Programme is run through the Fast Stream, providing nine-week, paid work experience placements for undergraduates from BME and lower socio-economic backgrounds. They provide 120 students with placements across departments every year piloted a two-week residential scheme with the Social Mobility Foundation, aimed at 16–17 year olds from schools with above-average free school meal numbers. Interns are placed in government departments and stay in university accommodation in London, with skills-focused activities organised in the evenings

• at college level: Last year the Government

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• at secondary school level: A one-day

programme for 120 Year 9 students aims to give them the opportunity to learn about work in the civil service.

Evaluation processes are in place for all of these schemes. The Government is also ending informal internships in Whitehall, and all departments will advertise their existing professional internship schemes on a central Whitehall internships website, with outreach undertaken to promote internships and work experience to under-represented groups. Since April 2012 a transparent recruitment process has been in place for all placements in order to ensure fair access. These are welcome developments that should be monitored for their effectiveness.

Conclusion
In its role as an employer the Government is beginning to make steady progress on improving fair access to a professional career in the civil service. The same is true for the initiatives it has launched on internships in Whitehall. These are welcome developments. Providing that this impetus is maintained and extended, and schemes are monitored for their effectiveness, the current unbalanced social composition of the Senior Civil Service should change over time. In Parliament there is a different and altogether less satisfactory story. A start has been made on formalising internship opportunities, with the Speaker’s Parliamentary Placements Scheme among the finest we have come across in any sector. But it is only scratching the surface of a far broader and more entrenched problem. Most Parliamentary interns are still recruited informally, so favouring those in the know and those with connections. Parliament as a whole must step up to the plate on this issue. It should be setting a good example – not a bad one – for other employers and professions. That is not the case at the moment.

The political parties also have an important responsibility when it comes to the social composition of parliamentarians. Of the Cabinet in May 2010, 59% were educated privately. Some 32% of the final Cabinet under the previous Labour Government were also educated privately.12 Of course we should want the brightest and the best to be leading our country, regardless of their background. But when the major political parties continue to select Parliamentary candidates who are disproportionately drawn from betteroff backgrounds, to the exclusion of those from less well-off ones, they are limiting that pool of talent rather than widening it. Over recent years, the political parties have made some progress on selecting women and BME candidates. A similar effort is now needed on their part when it comes to diversifying the socio-economic backgrounds of those they select to be their candidates for MPs. The Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission should look for evidence of improvement in the lead-up to the next general election.

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Chapter 7 Progress made by government on access to the professions

This chapter sets out:

• Government policies and their impact on fair access to the professions • Recommendations for further action • A table of professions-related recommendations from Unleashing Aspiration and the progress
made in implementing them

Introduction
In January 2010, the then Labour Government published its formal response to the Unleashing Aspiration report.1 It covered all 88 recommendations, the vast majority of which were accepted, or accepted in principle. Since then there has been a change of government and, inevitably, this means that departmental priorities change. The fiscal climate has also changed in that time and departments are facing significant budgetary challenges. Nevertheless, the Government has restated its commitment to the social mobility agenda. In April 2011, the Government published its social mobility strategy,2 a key component of which is “improving fair access by challenging employers, in particular the professions, to open up opportunities and contribute to improved social mobility”. It highlights again the importance of the job market being as fair as it can be all the way up to the top. It also reiterates that professions which play a crucial role in the governance of our country, such as law and journalism, should be broadly representative of society, since that underpins their legitimacy.

I wrote to those government departments with lead responsibility for implementing recommendations in the Unleashing Aspiration report requesting an update on progress. Below I consider their responses, focusing on government progress as it relates specifically to the professions. Shortly, I will publish a further report on higher education to consider progress made on recommendations in Unleashing Aspiration pertaining to universities. Finally, in the summer I will publish a full review of the impact of government policy on both social mobility and child poverty. Unleashing Aspiration made clear that government had a crucial role to play in helping to improve access to professional careers. The responsibility for leading implementation of its recommendations fell mainly to two government departments: the Department for Education (formerly the Department for Children, Schools and Families) and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. A small number of recommendations fell to other departments, including the Ministry of Defence, the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and the Cabinet Office. The key

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recommendations for the Government to oversee in relation to the professions themselves came under the following four themes:

• developed the Youth Inspiration Project, which

• supporting young people’s early aspiration for
professional careers

• work experience and internships • recruitment and selection processes • flexible entry and progression into the
professions.

is an industry and voluntary sector-led initiative to help inspire young people about their future with the aim of creating a range of online services bringing all careers information and opportunities for young people into one place which aims to promote a more cohesive, responsible and engaged society by bringing  16 and 17 year olds from different backgrounds together to make a difference in their communities, overcome new challenges and develop employability skills and raise aspirations. As part of the NCS, young people have the opportunity to visit local businesses and build relationships with potential employers.

• established the National Citizen Service (NCS),

Supporting young people’s early aspiration for a professional career
Back in 2009 there was a proliferation of government-led programmes, many of them excellent, aimed at helping raise young people’s aspirations, whether through mentoring schemes or opportunities for pupils to gain professional insights. Largely these programmes were being offered on an ad-hoc basis, with a reliance on schools signing up to take part, rather than on a co-ordinated, national scale. In talking to A-level students and undergraduates, it became clear how important it was for them to meet young professionals who look and talk like them and who have just embarked upon successful careers. Unleashing Aspiration made recommendations to develop national programmes to do just that through a ‘Yes you can’ campaign underpinned by a professions.com website and a national database of people willing to act as mentors and ambassadors in schools. The Government has:

These are welcome steps in the right direction but as yet they do not have national scale or punch. The Government should grow existing initiatives to match the ambitions set out in Unleashing Aspiration for a major national drive to raise young people’s awareness of professional career opportunities. A national mentoring scheme is a particular priority for action. It is also welcome that the Ministry of Defence has been working to ensure that those state schools that wish to participate in Combined Cadet Force activity are able to do so. Cadet Forces are voluntary and promote the sort of skills that the professions value, such as team work and leadership. Currently, 29 independent schools are linking with state schools to help host independent–state school partnerships. The department is currently working on a third party funding initiative to develop the proposal, which it is hoped will lead to a national roll-out. The Government should be aiming for such a national scheme and should set out a clear timetable for doing so. The Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission should assess its progress.

• endorsed an Inspiring the Future initiative –

established by the Education and Employers Taskforce – that targets 100,000 speakers from a wide range of sectors and professions, who go into schools and colleges free of charge to talk to young people about their jobs, careers and the education routes they took statement on services for young people focused on building a society that is ‘Positive for Youth’, as part of which it is hoped that volunteering and peer mentoring will help build young people’s self-esteem and confidence

• published a new cross-government policy

Information, advice and guidance
A major focus of Unleashing Aspiration was to reform careers services for young people. It recommended in particular that these services should be devolved to schools and that Ofsted

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should be given new powers to inspect their performance. Faced with the complexity of choices available in the modern labour market it is more vital than ever that all young people have access to the highest-quality careers advice. Our discussions have revealed concerns regarding the current state of careers advice. The Government has:

Case Study:
National Careers Service

For many people, finding a career and maximising their potential cannot be achieved without the best advice and guidance. The National Careers Service, using professional, qualified and expert careers advisers, will encourage people to consider all the opportunities open to them, including those in occupations and professions which they might not have considered. With access to comprehensive labour market and occupational information drawn from employer associations, chartered institutes and professional bodies, advisers will help people to make choices about the best careers for them. These are welcome developments, but the Government now needs to take further steps. First, although schools will have a statutory duty to provide independent, impartial careers guidance for pupils aged 14–16 (and the Government is consulting on extending this to 13–18), there is still a question about whether schools will be able to do this effectively given that they have no additional funding. The Government must take all necessary steps to ensure that careers advice in schools does not miss the most disadvantaged pupils. Second, it is critical that access to independent careers guidance is extended to cover 13 year olds. Third, Ofsted inspections of schools must routinely consider the extent to which pupils understand the options and challenges facing them as they move on to the next stages of their education, training and employment. I will explore the issues of careers advice more fully in my report on higher education.

• given schools direct responsibility for securing

appropriate careers guidance. The Education Act 2011 placed a new duty on schools to secure access to independent and impartial careers advice on the full range of post-16 education and training options for pupils in Years 9 to 11 from September 2012. The Government is looking at options for extending the new requirements to Year 8, as well as to 16–18 year olds. Outside of the current consultation, the Government will also consider options for extending the new requirements to 16–18 year olds in other educational settings, including apprentices and those in work-based education and training of the professions in preparation for the launch of the National Careers Service and its subsequent operation. Using its Professions Collaborative Forum,3 the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills has forged collaborative links with the Professions for Good4 initiative. A working group will establish how the professions can co-ordinate data and advice for private sector information, advice and guidance providers review of careers guidance, which is due to report in the summer of 2013.

• sought to ensure appropriate involvement

• ensured that Ofsted undertakes a thematic

Work experience and internships
Unleashing Aspiration recommended that a national work experience programme be set up for school pupils. It also urged government to offer financial support for disadvantaged young people wishing to undertake internships and the creation of a national website to publish and kitemark information about internship opportunities.

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On work experience, the Government has:

• accepted Professor Alison Wolf’s5

recommendation to increase the availability of high-quality work experience for 16–18 year olds as well as run a pilot involving 25 colleges to explore new approaches to post-16 work experience. Schools will now be expected to engage with local employers to offer pupils insights into the world of work

• launched its ‘Every Business Commits’ initiative,

and provided additional funding for 80,000 work experience places for young people, ensuring that up to 100,000 places will be available over the next two years – schools for 14–19 year olds – to offer pupils a full-time, technically oriented course of study with hands-on learning, integrating academic study with practical work experience.

It is very encouraging that the Government has taken these steps. In particular, it is welcome that the Government has indicated that employers should go beyond their legal obligations and pay interns a wage that reflects the value of the intern’s contribution. This should help to ensure that those from more disadvantaged backgrounds are not prevented from taking up internship opportunities due to their financial circumstances. There is, however, a long way to go before employers’ practices change to reflect these policy changes. That will require vigilance and continued effort on the part of government. The Government needs to step up its work with professions to find the best way to kitemark internships for their quality. There may be other Kitemark schemes already up and running that businesses could be encouraged to use. Finally, the Government should consider whether it can find innovative means of offering forms of financial support to disadvantaged young people wanting to undertake an internship.

• developed the first university technical colleges

These are all positive developments. But there is some way to go before work experience opportunities are delivered in a professional and co-ordinated way in all schools. The Government should consider what more needs to be done to ensure that this happens. On internships, the Government has:

Recruitment and selection processes
Unleashing Aspiration called on the Government to work with the professions on improving selection processes and better co-ordinating outreach initiatives. In response, the Government has launched its Social Mobility Business Compact. It asks employers to commit to:

• supported the Professions Collaborative

Forum in publishing a Common Best Practice Code for High-Quality Internships,6 thus sending a clear signal to employers that they should be providing fair and high-quality internships free website, which was established in May 2009 to encourage more employers to offer graduate internships and to make them available to the widest possible group of recent graduates improve clarity about how the National Minimum Wage applies to work experience and internships

• supporting communities and local schools

• developed the Graduate Talent Pool (GTP), a

by participating in mentoring schemes and encouraging staff to help raise aspirations of young people opportunities for all young people to get a foot on the careers ladder, for example by advertising work experience opportunities in local schools rather than filling them informally and offering open and transparent internships discrimination, for example by increasing the use of name-blind and school-blind applications.

• improving skills and creating jobs by providing

• issued new guidance to employers to help

• recruiting openly and fairly, ensuring non­

• through HM Revenue and Customs, stepped up its National Minimum Wage enforcement activity in sectors in which unpaid internships are commonplace, to ensure that employers are complying with the law • introduced its Social Mobility Business Compact.

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The Social Mobility Business Compact is to be commended. As seen below, more than 130 businesses and individuals from a wide range of sectors have already signed up to it.7
A4e Accenture Addleshaw Goddard LLP Adecco Group UK & Ireland Airbus Allen & Overy LLP Alliance Boots Anchor Trust Arriva Asda Ashurst LLP Associated Newspapers Association of Accounting Technicians Association of Chartered Certified Accountants Atkins Limited Aviva plc AXA BAE Systems plc Baker & McKenzie LLP Bank of America Merrill Lynch The Bar Council BarcelÓ Hotels UK Barclays Bauer Media Group BP plc BT Group Cancer Research UK Capgemini Capita Carillion Centrica Channel 4 Chartered Insurance Institute Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development Chartered Institute of Public Relations Citi CMS Cameron McKenna LLP Coca Cola Enterprises Coca Cola Great Britain Compass Group Credit Suisse Deutsche Bank Endemol E.ON UK Ernst & Young Evening Press Corporation Eversheds Everything Everywhere Experian Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP Fujitsu G4S UK General Electric GlaxoSmithKline Grant Thornton Greggs Guardian News and Media Herbert Smith LLP Hewlett Packard Hilton Worldwide Hogan Lovells LLP House of Fraser HSBC IBM Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales Institute of Healthcare Management Irwin Mitchell LLP ITV Jaguar Land Rover Jo Swinson MP J.P. Morgan Jurys Inn Hotels Kempt KPMG Legal Services Board Liberal Democrats HQ Linklaters LLP Lloyds Banking Group L’Oréal (UK) Marks and Spencer McDonald’s McGinley Support Services Mears Group Media Trust Microsoft MITIE Group plc Morrisons Mothercare/Early Learning Centre National Grid Nationwide Building Society Nestlé UK & Ireland NHS Employers Norton Rose LLP O2 Pertemps PricewaterhouseCoopers Proctor & Gamble Prudential UK & Europe Public Relations Consultants Association Radio Independents Group Random House Publishing Red Consultancy Research in Motion (Blackberry) The Royal Academy of Engineering Royal Bank of Scotland Royal Institute of British Architects Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors Royal Opera House RWE npower Sainsbury’s Santander UK plc Schroders Serco Shell Siemens Simmons & Simmons LLP Sony Standard Life Starbucks Tata Consultancy Services Tata Global Beverages Tata Steel Teach First Teleperformance Tesco The Co-operative Group Thomson Reuters UNITE Group University Partnerships Programme Virgin Group Vodafone Watershed PR Wates Group WPP Zurich

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It is also welcome that the Government is encouraging those employers to go even further, for example by collecting socio-economic data on employees. We would now like to see the Government encouraging a broader range of employers, including small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), to commit to the criteria of the Compact. It should establish clear goals and objectives for the programme as a whole. It should publish an annual update on the progress of the Compact. The Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission should periodically review the progress the Compact is making.

• proposed extending the right to request flexible
working to all employees as part of the Modern Workplaces consultation launched in 2011, with a duty for employers to consider requests ‘reasonably’. The Government will publish its response to the consultation shortly and will issue a code of practice to explain what it considers ‘reasonable’.

Flexible entry and progression into the professions
Unleashing Aspiration recommended that the Government should stimulate the development of more apprenticeships, encourage more paraprofessional roles and provide more flexible work opportunities. The Government has:

This progress is to be commended but there needs to be greater consistency and depth of involvement across the professions, and government should work with them to achieve that. It should work with the professions to make non-graduate entry routes the norm, not the exception. In particular, the Government needs to work with the professions to ensure that apprenticeships are not just a route into a professional career but also a ladder to progress.

Assessing government progress on the recommendations in Unleashing Aspiration
Making progress on these issues is a job for the long term. It is difficult to assess what impact the Government is making this early in its life. So inevitably this chapter has focused on what the Government is doing – as distinct from the outcome it is achieving – in improving fair access to the professions. Of course, in the end, the professions themselves have to do most of the heavy lifting, but the Government has a critical enabling and supporting role. Its policies influence all the key stages in a young person’s life, and the Government can exert influence with employers to change their practices. Overall the Government has shown good intentions when it comes to improving fair access to a professional career. But the Government is making more progress in some areas than others. It needs to be more holistic in its approach and ensure that its efforts are better co-ordinated. The Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission should annually review what progress the Government is making.

• sought to stimulate higher apprenticeships. A

total of 22 new higher apprenticeship projects are under way, and new higher apprenticeship frameworks are being developed for a range of occupations and professions a whole and is supporting the development of up to 25,000 new higher apprenticeships in key growth sectors, including construction, renewable energy, advanced engineering, insurance and financial services. Apprenticeship starts have increased at a record rate, with growth across all age ranges, in all sectors, and throughout the country. Final data for the 2010/11 academic year shows 457,200 apprenticeship starts, an increase of 63.5% over 2009/10 £1,500 for small employers who take on their first new apprentice aged 16–24

• expanded the apprenticeship programme as

• introduced incentive payments in April 2012, of

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71

In the meantime, the table that follows summarises our assessment of the progress that has been made by government since 2009 in implementing the recommendations set out in Unleashing Aspiration. It looks only at those recommendations that are professions-related. The traffic lights show where progress is being made and where action has stalled.

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

Theme

Recommendation

Who to deliver

Progress

CHAPTER 4: Raising aspirations: new opportunities for young people to learn about the professions Reforming the Gifted and Talented programme and rebranding to a new “raising aspirations” programme A national network of career mentors 1. The Government should reform and rebrand the Gifted and Talented programme to provide more opportunities to pupils in primary and secondary schools, including mentoring, work tasters and training in soft skills. Department for Education

2. The professions and the Government should together introduce a national scheme for career mentoring by young professionals and university students of school pupils in Years 9 to 13. The national mentoring scheme should involve partnerships with employers, voluntary organisations, universities and schools. 3. The professions and the Government should organise a ‘Yes you can’ campaign, headed by inspirational role models, to encourage more young people to aspire to a professional career.

The professions Department for Education Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Department for Education Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

School alumni networks

4. The Government, working with the The professions professions and universities, should develop a Department for national database of people willing to act as role Education models or mentors for young people in their former schools.   5. The Government should undertake a radical overhaul of work experience programmes in schools – in conjunction with reforms to information, advice and guidance services and the Gifted and Talented programme – to ensure that they are professionally organised and better aligned with pupils’ careers decision-making. The professions Department for Education Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

Opportunities to gain professional insights

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Theme

Recommendation

Who to deliver

Progress

CHAPTER 4: Raising aspirations: new opportunities for young people to learn about the professions (continued)   6. The Government should establish a national work taster scheme for older school pupils, starting with those from the most disadvantaged backgrounds. The professions should identify employers willing to take part. Together the Government and the professions should provide financial support for the project, which should be linked to the proposed national scheme for mentoring by young professionals and university students. 7. Each profession should recruit and support a network of young professional ambassadors who would work with schools to raise awareness of career opportunities for young people. Professional bodies should recognise, as continuous professional development, the contribution of young professionals who volunteer their time. 8. All schools should work with businesses and professions to promote and support professionally led outreach at late primary and early secondary age. Harnessing technology to inform and inspire young people   9. The Government should work with a professional group to establish a ‘youth technology and innovation challenge’ award as a means of identifying and showcasing creative ways to inspire young people. The professions Employers Department for Education Department for Business, Innovation and Skills The professions Department for Education Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Department for Education The professions The professions Department for Education Department for Business, Innovation and Skills The professions Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Department for Education

Professional outreach

10. The professions and the Government should create a ‘professions.com’ website to link young people to existing online information about professional careers and schemes, such as internship and mentoring programmes. The professions should provide relevant content and material to develop this website.

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

Theme

Recommendation

Who to deliver

Progress

CHAPTER 4: Raising aspirations: new opportunities for young people to learn about the professions (continued) Financing national programmes through new partnerships 11. The Government should bring forward seed-corn funding, in the region of £2.5 million to £3 million, to fund the recommended proposals on mentoring, work tasters and an online portal.  Projects should be co-funded by a partnership comprising government, professional bodies and employers.  12. The Government should use the model of Social Impact Bonds as a means of leveraging state and private investment into the delivery of social mobility interventions.  13. Schools and colleges should have direct responsibility for providing information, advice and guidance, with a professional careers service located in every school and college – starting from primary age. 14. The Government should remove careers responsibility from the Connexions service. It should reallocate an estimated £200 million to schools and colleges in order to give them the freedom to tender for careers services from a range of providers. 15. Schools, colleges and professions should work in partnership to produce career prospectuses and online information sources aimed at parents. Information could include routes into different professions and the remuneration and costs involved. Department for Education Department for Business, Innovation and Skills The professions All government departments

Social Mobility Bonds

CHAPTER 5: Schools: new opportunities to learn and choose careers Reforming careers advice Department for Education Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Department for Education Department for Communities and Local Government Department for Education Department for Business, Innovation and Skills All professions 16. Ofsted should be given new powers to inspect schools on the quality and performance of their information, advice and guidance provision as part of the Ofsted inspection framework. Department for Education Ofsted

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Theme

Recommendation

Who to deliver

Progress

CHAPTER 6: Universities: new opportunities to pursue higher education Widening participation further 17. Each profession should develop partnership compact arrangements with university faculties. These arrangements might include linking up recent professional entrants as personal mentors with young people in schools, and issuing guidance about the profession and how to get into it. 18. The Government should work with universities to develop proposals to integrate a flexible element of professional experience into all higher education courses. The professions Universities Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Universities CHAPTER 7: Internships: new opportunities to get on to the professional career ladder A three year voluntary approach to fair internships 19. The Government should review how effective the Panel’s voluntary approach on internships has been by the end of 2012, with a view to enacting stronger means to ensure compliance if satisfactory progress has not been made at that point, including through new legislation. 20. The professions, the Government, trade unions and the third sector should together produce a common best practice code for high-quality internships.  21. Each profession should make employers in its field aware of the best practice code and encourage them to adopt it for all relevant internship and work experience placements (including university ‘sandwich’ courses). 22. The Government should develop the Talent Pool Internship Portal to become a single website for all pre- and postgraduate internships. The professions Department for Business, Innovation and Skills The professions Department for Business, Innovation and Skills The professions

Integrating professional experience into academic courses

Establishing a fair and transparent system for internships  

 

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills The professions

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

Theme

Recommendation

Who to deliver

Progress

CHAPTER 7: Internships: new opportunities to get on to the professional career ladder (continued) 23. The Government should ensure that the Talent Pool Internship Portal has an advertising budget that is sufficient to ensure that it has a high-profile launch. It should target students who would otherwise not be aware of these opportunities, pre-university students who might not know that financial help towards a professional career is available, and schools with a high proportion of children on free school meals. Recognising best practice: a national Kitemark for employers 24. The professions, the Government, trade unions and the third sector should agree an Internship Quality Kitemark scheme for highquality internship programmes. The Kitemark should set out the criteria that a high-quality internship placement should meet The professions Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

The professions Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Trade unions The third sector The professions

 

25. Each professional association should make the acceptance and use of the best practice code and Kitemark a condition of being a member of the professional association, and accept responsibility for making employers in its field aware of both. 26. The National Union of Students, the Trades Union Congress and the Government should work together to take forward an outreach programme to ensure that students from all backgrounds give due consideration to undertaking an internship.

 

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Trade Unions Congress National Union of Students

 

27. The Talent Pool Internship Portal should go further in developing and promoting its forum where ex-interns can post reviews of the internships that they have undertaken.

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

Chapter 7 Progress made by government on access to the professions

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Theme Affordability: removing financial constraints

Recommendation 28. The Government should allow students to draw down their existing Student Loan entitlement in four parts, rather than the current three, so enabling students to be able to cover the additional costs of undertaking a short summer internship. The Government should review how to appropriately target additional loan support to such students. 29. The Government should explore ways of providing means-tested micro-loans to interns to cover the cost of living and commuting for a short internship period. 30. Companies offering internships should be given the option to pay a small part of their tax contribution directly to the Student Loans Company to cover the cost of the internship loans and associated administrative costs. 31. The Government should work with banks and other lending institutions to provide Internship Support Loans to be used to cover the costs associated with undertaking an internship. Such loans could be made along similar lines to Professional and Career Development Loans.

Who to deliver Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

Progress

CHAPTER 7: Internships: new opportunities to get on to the professional career ladder (continued)

 

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

 

 

 

32. Provision of all government-brokered or The professions supported financial assistance for interns should be dependent upon the internship placement in question having received the Internship Quality Kitemark.  Professions should stipulate a similar restriction upon any financial assistance provided or brokered by them for similar purposes.  Universities should support the Kitemark scheme by advertising it to students who are looking for internships. 33. The professions should provide more support for interns from lower socio-economic backgrounds through grants and loans. The Government should recognise the efforts of those employers that provide such support for interns by granting tax relief on money that is provided for grants and loans. 34. Professions should work directly with banks and other lending institutions to provide privately brokered financing for those studying for relevant professional qualifications. Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

 

 

The professions

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

Theme  

Recommendation 35. The professions should create an online resource that sets out the range of professionspecific financial support that is available for prospective interns and students of professional qualifications. The online resource should set out what support is available, where it can be accessed, the criteria used to disburse it and the various application methods and deadlines. Such information should be advertised on professional websites, as well as on the Government’s Talent Pool Internship Portal.

Who to deliver The professions Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

Progress

CHAPTER 7: Internships: new opportunities to get on to the professional career ladder (continued)

CHAPTER 8: Recruitment and selection: new opportunities for talent to shine Collecting data on socio-economic background 36. The Government should collect and publish data on the socio-economic background of entrants to the Senior Civil Service, drawing on the lessons that have been learned from collecting and publishing data on gender, race and disability. 37. Each profession should carry out a review of current practice on fair access to the profession, with a view to developing practical ideas for improvement. The professions should report publicly on these by the end of 2010, with a clear set of recommendations and an action plan for implementation. 38. The Government’s online Professional Recruitment Guide should be amended and should be jointly and actively promoted by the professions and the Government to help employers to develop recruitment practices that can ensure fairer access. 39. Each profession should work with the National Apprenticeship Service and the relevant Sector Skills Councils to establish clear progression routes from vocational training into the professions, and ensure that learners are aware of these routes. Cabinet Office

Professions planning for fair access

The professions

Promoting fair standards: a guide for employers

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

CHAPTER 9: Flexible professions: new opportunities for career progression Expanding the ladder of entry points into the professions The professions National Apprenticeship Service Sector Skills Councils Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

Chapter 7 Progress made by government on access to the professions

79

Theme

Recommendation

Who to deliver

Progress

CHAPTER 9: Flexible professions: new opportunities for career progression (continued)   40. The Government and the professions should provide a repository of best practice setting out practical ways in which vocational routes can be expanded into the professions. 41. The Government should extend apprenticeships in professional areas of employment in government departments. Where applicable, these should be explicitly linked to existing management development programmes such as the Civil Service Fast Stream. The professions Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Cabinet Office Public sector employers and other public bodies The professions

 

 

42. The professions should consider how to introduce Apprenticeship schemes as part of their reviews of fair access processes. 43. Each profession should examine the potential to devolve functions to paraprofessionals. The Government should ensure that, across all of the public services, reform programmes are being introduced to do the same. 44. The professions should work with the Government and others to set out clear progression maps from paraprofessional roles, and ensure that training systems support these routes.

Paraprofessional entry roles to the professions

The professions Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills The professions The professions Professional regulators

Opening up mid-career opportunities

45. Professional bodies and professional regulators should encourage businesses in their sector to ensure that they meet best practice in mid-career changes and career interchange routes. Regulators should publish information on how successful professional employers are being in providing more flexible entry and progression routes.

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

Theme

Recommendation

Who to deliver

Progress

CHAPTER 9: Flexible professions: new opportunities for career progression (continued)   46. The Government should review how best to support return-to-work programmes for mid-career re-entrants, for example through incentives for employers who adopt such scheme early. 47. Once economic circumstances allow, the right to request flexible working should be extended to all employees. 48. The Government should reconfigure the existing Skill Accounts programme to establish a truly demand-driven system of Lifelong Skill Accounts. They could comprise a voucher up to the value of £5,000 that could be topped up through contributions from individuals and employers with a wide range of entitlement including to apprenticeships, professional qualifications and to part-time further and higher education programmes, for example. 49. As part of a shift to a more demand-led model of training the Government should review how to redirect support for employers through tax or other direct incentive schemes. Recognising the contribution of further education as a driver of social mobility 50. As part of a shift to more demand-led training, the Government should review how it can free up the oversight and control of further education. 51. The Government should ensure that future increases in spending are better aligned between further and higher education, recognising the important contribution of further education colleges for social mobility, particularly as providers of diverse training routes into the professions. Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

Encouraging more flexible working patterns A new demand-led training system that empowers learners

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

Chapter 7 Progress made by government on access to the professions

81

Theme

Recommendation

Who to deliver

Progress

CHAPTER 10: Delivering the recommendations A UK collaborative professional forum 52. The Government and the professions should agree to continue the Gateways to the Professions Collaborative Forum in the form of a UK Professional Forum. The new Forum should be chaired at Ministerial level and should comprise senior representatives from a diverse range of professions. 53. The statutory and approved regulators of individual professions should embed the social mobility and fair access agenda into forward strategic plans. The professions Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Statutory regulators Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Statutory regulators Department for Business, Innovation and Skills The professions

Statutory regulators

54. Regulators should consider how to embed more widely the fair access agenda permanently into the work and strategic planning of their professions and take the appropriate regulatory action to do so. Corporate Social Responsibility 55. The professions should routinely report on activities that are aimed at making access fairer as part of their established corporate social responsibility reporting arrangements. 56. The Government, through Business Link services, should provide comprehensive guidance on what type of activity could be taken to make access fairer and that would meet corporate social responsibility objectives. 57. The Government should explore the case for targeted support, such as tax incentives, to leverage additional measures from employers to open up access. A Fair Access Charter Mark 58. The Government should introduce a fair access charter mark to recognise and reward those professional bodies and employers that take direct, effective and meaningful steps towards making access to their profession fairer.

 

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

83

Annex A Contributors to the progress report on Fair Access to Professional Careers

A large number of individuals and organisations provided invaluable input to the work of the Independent Reviewer through contributions in response to the call for evidence as well as participation in roundtable discussions and individual meetings. We are grateful for the evidence provided. 5 Essex Court Chambers 23 Essex Street Chambers Addleshaw Goddard LLP Aldi Allen & Overy LLP Architects Registration Board Arup Asda Ashurst LLP Association of Accounting Technicians Association of Chartered Certified Accountants Association of Costs Lawyers The Association of International Accountants Association of Taxation Technicians Atkins Limited AXA BAE Systems plc Baker & McKenzie LLP Balfour Beatty plc Bank of America The Bar Council Bird & Bird LLP Blackstone Chambers b-live Boots BP plc Brighton and Sussex Medical School British Bankers’ Association British Medical Association Broadcasting, Entertainment, Cinematograph and Theatre Union BSkyB BT Business in the Community Centrica Channel 4 Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists Chartered Institute of Legal Executives Chartered Institute of Management Accountants The Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development The Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy Chartered Institute of Public Relations The Chartered Insurance Institute City Solicitors’ Educational trust Civil Service Clifford Chance LLP CMS Cameron McKenna LLP The College of Law Confederation of British Industry Costs Lawyer Standards Board Council for Licensed Conveyancers Creative Skillset

84

Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

Credit Suisse Deutsche Bank AG Diageo plc DLA Piper LLP EDF Energy Education and Employers Taskforce Everything Everywhere Foster + Partners Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP General Medical Council GlaxoSmithKline plc Google Grant Thornton UK LLP Guardian Media Group plc Herbert Smith LLP Hogan Lovells LLP HSBC Holdings plc IBM Inner Temple Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales Institute of Healthcare Management Interns Anonymous Intern Aware ITN King’s College London KPMG Kraft Foods The Law Society Legal & General Group plc Legal Services Board Linklaters LLP Lloyds Banking Group plc L’Oréal UK & Ireland McDonald’s Restaurants Ltd Macmillan Publishers Marks and Spencer plc Media Trust Medical Schools Council Microsoft Mott MacDonald

NHS Employers National Museum of Science and Industry National Union of Journalists npower Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry PricewaterhouseCoopers Rolls-Royce Holdings plc The Royal Academy of Engineering Royal Bank of Scotland Royal College of General Practitioners Royal College of Physicians Royal College of Psychiatrists Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons Royal Institute of British Architects Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors Royal Opera House Royal Society of Chemistry Royal Veterinary College Sainsbury’s Santander UK plc Science Museum Simmons & Simmons LLP Skills for Justice Slaughter and May Social Mobility Foundation Solicitors Regulation Authority Starbucks Coffee Company St Georges’ University of London The Sutton Trust Tate Taylor Wessing Services Limited The Access Project The Telegraph Towers Watson UBS University College London University College London Hospital Victoria and Albert Museum Vodafone White & Case LLP Zurich

85

References

Chapter 1

1 The Panel on Fair Access to the Professions was established by Prime Minister Gordon Brown in January 2009. 2 Panel on Fair Access to the Professions, Unleashing
Aspiration: The Final Report of the Panel on Fair Access to
the Professions, 2009
3 HM Government, Opening Doors, Breaking Barriers:
A Strategy for Social Mobility, 2011
4 Confederation of British Industry, unpublished labour
market analysis by Lena Tochtermann using Nomis
data, 2012
5 Joseph Rowntree Foundation, The Impact of Employment
Changes on Poverty in 2020, 2012
6 Panel on Fair Access to the Professions, Unleashing
Aspiration: The Final Report of the Panel on Fair Access to
the Professions, 2009
7 This data is drawn from Centre for Market and Public
Organisation, Social Mobility and the Professions, 2009

7 Department of Health, NHS Workforce Census Bulletin
2001-2011, 2012
8 Office for National Statistics, EMP02 Public and Private
Sector Employment (December 2011 figure), 2012
9 Financial Reporting Council, Professional Oversight Board, Key Facts and Trends in the Accountancy Profession June 2011, 2011. These figures have been taken from the six bodies with a Royal Charter, and include members in the Republic of Ireland. There are also other professional accountancy bodies in the UK that are not included in this figure. 10 Legal Services Board, Annual Statistics Report 2010, 2011
11 Bar Standards Board and the General Council of the
Bar of England and Wales, Bar Barometer: Trends in the
Profile of the Bar, 2011
12 Association of Graduate Recruiters, Graduate
Recruitment Survey 2012 – Winter Review, 2012
13 Institute for Public Policy Research, Social Mobility:
A Background Review, 2008
14 Panel on Fair Access to the Professions, Unleashing
Aspiration: The Final Report of the Panel on Fair Access to
the Professions, 2009
15 UK Commission for Employment and Skills, Working
Futures 2010-2020 – Evidence Report 41 (based on 2010
data, includes ‘managers, directors and senior officials’;
‘professional occupations’; and ‘associate professional
and technical’), 2011
16 Sissons, P., The Work Foundation, The Hourglass and
the Escalator: Labour Market Change and Mobility, 2011,
as referenced in University Alliance, A University Alliance
Report – The Way We’ll Work: Labour Market Trends and
Preparing for the Hourglass, 2012
17 Confederation of British Industry, unpublished labour
market analysis by Lena Tochtermann using Nomis data,
2012
18 UK Commission for Employment and Skills, Working
Futures 2010-2020 – Evidence Report 41, 2011

Chapter 2

1 HM Government, Opening Doors, Breaking Barriers:
A Strategy for Social Mobility, 2011
2 Office for National Statistics, Labour Market Statistics September 2009 and Labour Market Statistics April 2012 (comparing quarters May 2009–July 2009 and December 2011–February 2012) 3 Organisation for Economic Co-operation and
Development, Divided We Stand: Why Inequality Keeps
Rising, 2011
4 Institute for Fiscal Studies, Child and Working Age Poverty
from 2010 to 2020, 2011
5 EngineeringUK, Engineering UK, 2012
6 Office for National Statistics, Public Sector Employment –
2011, 2012

86

Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

19 Association of Graduate Recruiters, Graduate
Recruitment Survey 2012 – Winter Review, 2012
20 Warwick Institute for Employment Research estimates
in Joseph Rowntree Foundation, Poverty and Inequality
in 2020: Impact of Changes in the Structure of
Employment, 2012
21 Centre for Market and Public Organisation, Social
Mobility and the Professions, 2009
22 Higher Education Statistics Agency, HESA Student Record
2002/03 and 2010/11, 2012
23 Cabinet Office, Aspiration and Attainment Amongst Young
People in Deprived Communities, 2008
24 b-live Social Mobility Survey preliminary results,
designed and analysed by the Education and Employers
Taskforce and Deirdre Hughes, 2012
25 Aimhigher, Review of Evidence from ‘Aimhigher Area
Partnerships’ of the Impact of Aimhigher, 2011
26 Confederation of British Industry, Building for Growth:
Business Priorities for Education and Skills – Education and
Skills Survey 2011, 2011
27 Wilson, T., A Review of Business-University Collaboration,
2012
28 For example Driffield, N., Foster C., and Higson H.,
Aston University, Placements and Degree Performance:
Do Placements Lead to Better Marks or Do Better Students
Choose Placements, 2011
29 Wolf, A., Review of Vocational Education – the Wolf
Report, 2011
30 High Fliers Research, The Graduate Market in 2011:
Annual Review of Graduate Vacancies & Starting Salaries at
Britain’s Leading Employers, 2011
31 Association of Graduate Recruiters, Graduate
Recruitment Survey 2012 – Winter Review, 2012
32 High Fliers Research, The Graduate Market in 2012:
Annual Review of Graduate Vacancies & Starting Salaries at
Britain’s Leading Employers, 2012
33 National Institute of Economic and Social Research, Employability Skills Initiatives in Higher Education: What
Effects Do They Have on Graduate Labour Outcomes?, 2006
34 Higher Education Statistics Agency, Student Introduction 2008/09, www.hesa.ac.uk/index.php?option=com_ content&task=view&id=1650&Itemid=278 35 Wilson, T., A Review of Business-University Collaboration,
2012
36 Findings based on a survey of 787 HR managers who
are members of the Chartered Institute of Personnel
and Development, Chartered Institute of Personnel and
Development, 2010

37 Internocracy, Going for Broke: The State of Internships in
the UK, 2011
38 Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, Evaluation of the Graduate Talent Pool Internships Scheme,
BIS Research Paper 28, 2011
39 Confederation of British Industry, Building for Growth:
Business Priorities for Education and Skills – Education and
Skills Survey 2011, 2011
40 Internocracy, Going for Broke: The State of Internships in
the UK, 2011
41 Creative Industries Council Skillset Skills Group, Report
to Creative Industries Council, 2012
42 Gateways to the Professions Collaborative Forum, Common Best Practice Code for High-Quality Internships, 2011
43 Association of Graduate Recruiters, Graduate
Recruitment Survey 2008 – Winter Review, 2008
44 Association of Graduate Recruiters, Graduate
Recruitment Survey 2012 – Winter Review, 2012
45 High Fliers Research, The Graduate Market in 2012:
Annual Review of Graduate Vacancies & Starting Salaries at
Britain’s Leading Employers, 2012
46 Higher Education Statistics Agency, Young Full Time
Undergraduates 2010/11, 2012
47 Office for National Statistics, Labour Force Survey, 2008
48 High Fliers Research, The Graduate Market in 2012:
Annual Review of Graduate Vacancies & Starting Salaries at
Britain’s Leading Employers, 2012
49 Ibid. 50 UK Commission for Employment and Skills, Working
Futures 2010-2020 – Evidence Report 41, 2011
51 Developed by Spada for Professions for Good, Social
Mobility Toolkit for the Professions, 2012
52 Association of Graduate Recruiters, Graduate
Recruitment Survey 2012 – Winter Review, 2012

Chapter 3

1 Data is sourced from publicly available information from Who’s Who and Debrett’s online, April 2012 2 The 11 major public schools are Eton, Harrow,
Winchester, Westminster, Rugby, St Paul’s,
Charterhouse, Merchant Taylors’, Shrewsbury,
Marlborough and Wellington, as defined by Perkin, H.,
The Rise of Professional Society: England Since 1880, 1990
3 Data is sourced from publicly available information from Who’s Who and Debrett’s online, April 2012 4 Judiciary of England and Wales, 2011: Judicial Diversity
Statistics – Gender, Ethnicity and Professions, 2011

References

87

5 Judicial Appointments Commission, Diversity Strategy, 2012 6 Bar Standards Board and the General Council of the Bar, Barristers’ Working Lives: A Biennial Survey of the Bar 2011, 2012 7 Institute for Employment Studies/Employment Research Limited 2011 8 Bar Standards Board and the General Council of the Bar, Bar Barometer: Trends in the Profile of the Bar, 2011 9 Bar Standards Board and the General Council of the Bar, Barristers’ Working Lives: A Biennial Survey of the Bar 2011, 2012 10 Ibid. 11 Ibid. 12 Ibid. 13 The Law Society, Trends in the Solicitors’ Profession – Annual Statistical Report 2010, 2011 14 Ibid. 15 The General Council of the Bar, Entry to the Bar Working Party Final Report, 2007 16 The Black Solicitors Network, Diversity League Table 2011: A Demographic Survey of the Legal Profession, 2011 17 Some legal work is reserved by statute to solicitors and other specified regulated legal advisers. Practitioners of unreserved work do not operate under the regulation of the Solicitors Regulation Authority and do not need a practising certificate. 18 The Lawyer, UK200 2011, 2011 19 Figures based on firm ranking and Chartered Institute of Legal Executives membership data. 20 Figures based on 2012 Chartered Institute of Legal Executives survey of its members. 21 The Law Society, Trends in the Solicitors’ Profession – Annual Statistical Report 2010, 2011 22 Higher Education Statistics Agency, HESA Student Record 2002/03 and 2010/11, 2012 23 Legal Services Board, Barriers to the Legal Profession, 2010

3 British Medical Association, Equality and Diversity in UK Medical Schools, 2009 4 General Medical Council, The State of Medical Education and Practice in the UK, 2011 5 Royal College of Physicians, Women and Medicine: The Future, 2009 6 British Medical Association, Equality and Diversity in UK Medical Schools, 2009 7 General Medical Council, The State of Medical Education and Practice in the UK, 2011. The data was drawn from the student profile returns from medical schools as well as the 2010 National Trainee Survey. 8 Higher Education Statistics Agency, HESA Student Record 2002/03 and 2010/11, 2012 9 Confidentiality concerns apply to all branches of medicine, but GPs are especially likely to be concerned because, as small independent contractors, they will not have the same level of HR advice and support as a hospital trust. They are therefore less likely to be able to come to an informed decision about the risks of offering work experience. As a result, the logical solution for many GP practices is simply to play it safe and not offer work experience. 10 Evidence provided at medicine roundtable, 8 February 2012. 11 General Medical Council, Tomorrow’s Doctors, 2009 12 The Sutton Trust, The Mobility Manifesto: A Report on Cost-Effective Ways to Achieve Greater Social Mobility through Education, based on work by the Boston Consulting Group, March 2010 13 Contextual data is a range of additional background information that universities can consider when assessing an application. This could include being on free school meals, being the first person in their family to go to university, coming from a state maintained school, etc. 14 The General Council of the Bar, Entry to the Bar Working Party Final Report, 2007

Chapter 5
1 For the purposes of this report we are defining media as broadcast and newspaper journalism. 2 Centre for Market and Public Organisation, Social Mobility and the Professions, 2009 3 Skillset, Television Sector Labour Market Intelligence Profile, 2012 4 The BBC Trust, Promoting Equal Opportunities in Employment – 2010/11, 2011 5 Broadcasting Equality and Training Regulator, Equal Opportunities Report, 2009

Chapter 4
1 Hospital figures from NHS Information Centre, Monthly Hospital and Community Health Service Workforce, January 2012 national table, 2012 2 GP figure from NHS Information Centre, NHS Workforce: Summary of Staff in the NHS: Results from September 2011 Census, 2012

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Fair Access to Professional Careers: A progress report

6 Women in Journalism, Why is British Public Life Dominated by Men, 2011 7 Journalism Training Forum, Journalists at work: Their Views on Training, Recruitment and Conditions, 2002 8 Office for National Statistics, Census 2001: National Report for England and Wales – All People Aged 16–74 Part 2 9 The Sutton Trust, The Educational Backgrounds of Leading Journalists, 2006 10 Higher Education Statistics Agency, Student Introduction 2008/2009, www.hesa.ac.uk/index.php?option=com_ content&task=view&id=1650&Itemid=278 11 National Union of Journalists, Work Experience: Exploiting the Dream, 2008

Chapter 7
1 HM Government, Unleashing Aspiration: The Government Response to the Final Report of the Panel on Fair Access to the Professions, 2009 2 HM Government, Opening Doors, Breaking Barriers: A Strategy for Social Mobility, 2011 3 The forum is a voluntary advisory group and allows government and a diverse range of more than 60 professional bodies to discuss and act upon barriers to entry to the professions to help widen access. 4 Professions for Good is a group of bodies with a membership of over 750,000 chartered professionals worldwide. 5 Wolf, A., Review of Vocational Education – The Wolf Report, 2011 6 Gateways to the Professions Collaborative Forum, Common Best Practice Code for High-Quality Internships, 2011 7 Signatories as at 14 May 2012.

Chapter 6
1 House of Commons Library Research, Key Issues for the New Parliament 2010, 2010 2 The Sutton Trust, The Educational Backgrounds of Members of Parliament in 2010, 2010 3 The Sutton Trust, The Educational Backgrounds of Members of the House of Commons and House of Lords, 2005 4 House of Commons, Speaker’s Conference (on Parliamentary Representation) Final Report, 2010 5 Office for National Statistics, Civil Service Statistics 2011, 2011 6 Cabinet Office, Fast Stream Recruitment Report 2009, 2010; Fast Stream Recruitment Report 2010, 2011 7 Perkin, H., The Rise of Professional Society: England Since 1880, 1990 8 Perkin defined his 11 major public schools as Eton, Harrow, Winchester, Westminster, Rugby, St Paul’s, Charterhouse, Merchant Taylors’, Shrewsbury, Marlborough and Wellington. 9 Cabinet Office, The Civil Service Diversity Story, 2010, http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov. uk/20100407140330/http:/www.civilservice.gov.uk/ news/2010/top200.aspx 10 The data was taken from Freedom of Information requests/answers to questions in Parliament. 11 Cabinet Office, Fast Stream Recruitment Report 2011, 2012 12 ‘New Cabinet: Who’s Who and Which Job Did They Get?’ The Guardian, 2010, www.guardian.co.uk/news/ datablog/2010/may/12/new-cabinet-whos-who-list

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